Turkish gov’t agency puts assets of 11 seized media outlets up for sale

Turkey’s Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) has put property belonging to 11 media outlets that were closed down by the Turkish government under the state of emergency declared in the aftermath of a failed coup on July 15, 2016 up for sale for TL 606,395.

The property belongs to media organizations such as the Jin News Agency (JINHA) Diyarbakır bureau, Azadiya Welat newspaper, Dicle News Agency (DİHA) and Bizim Kocaeli newspaper.

The equipment and fixed assets of these media outlets will be sold by sealed bid.Assets in DİHA’s Ankara Bureau have been valued at TL 905 and in Jinha’s Amed Bureau at TL 4,536. Azadi TV’s assets were valued at TL 245,000 and Bizim Kocaeli newspaper’s at TL 176,000.

Bidding will last until the evening of April 30, and the transactions will be completed after an assessment of the bids. An auction will be held on May 4 for items with multiple bidders.

The Turkish government closed down hundreds of critical media outlets through government decrees following the coup attempt, claiming that they were linked to terror organizations.

Turkey is ranked 157th among 180 countries in the 2018 World Press Freedom Index released by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) on Wednesday. If Turkey falls two more places, it will make it to the list of countries on the blacklist, which have the poorest record in press freedom.

Turkey is the biggest jailer of journalists in the world. The most recent figures documented by SCF show that 257 journalists and media workers were in jail as of April 25, 2018, most in pretrial detention. Of those in prison 198 were under arrest pending trial while only 59 journalists have been convicted and are serving their time. Detention warrants are outstanding for 141 journalists who are living in exile or remain at large in Turkey.

Detaining tens of thousands of people over alleged links to the Gülen movement, the government also closed down about 200 media outlets after a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016. (SCF with turkishminute.com)

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