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Kemal Kilicdaroglu, head of the Cumhuriyet Halk Partisi (CHP) party, said 64 journalists have been imprisoned and “We are now facing a new period where the media is controlled by the government and the police and where most media bosses take orders from political authorities.” The government says most of the imprisoned journalists have been detained for serious crimes, like membership in an armed terrorist group, that are not related to journalism.
Bianet's periodical reports on freedom of the press in Turkey published in October 2015 recorded a strengthening of attacks on the opposition media during the AKP interim government in the third quarter of 2015.
Those who resist do so at their own risk." Since his time as prime minister through to his presidency Erdogan has sought to control the press, forbidding coverage, restricting internet use and stepping up repression on journalists and media outlets.
Foreign media noted that, particularly in the early days (31 May – 2 June 2013) of the Gezi Park protests, the events attracted relatively little mainstream media coverage in Turkey, due to either government pressure on media groups' business interests or simply ideological sympathy by media outlets.
Anyone not following the decisions of the commission were subject to imprisonment, between one and three years.
Freedom of speech was heavily restricted after the 1980 military coup headed by General Kenan Evren.
By some accounts, Turkey currently accounts for one-third of all journalists imprisoned around the world.
Bianet's final 2015 monitoring report confirmed this trend and underlined that once regained majority after the AKP interim government period, the Turkish government further intensified its pressure on the country's media.
Verbal attacks on journalists by senior politicians—including Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the incumbent prime minister who was elected president in August—were often followed by harassment and even death threats against the targeted journalists on social media.
On 24 July 1908, at the beginning of the Second Constitutional Era, censorship was lifted; however, newspapers publishing stories that were deemed a danger to interior or exterior State security were closed.
Following the Turkish War of Independence, the Sheikh Said rebellion was used as pretext for implementing martial law ("Takrir-i Sükun Yasası") on March 4, 1925; newspapers, including Tevhid-i Efkar, Sebül Reşat, Aydınlık, Resimli Ay, and Vatan, were closed and several journalists arrested and tried at the Independence Courts.
Censorship in Turkey is regulated by domestic and international legislation, the latter (in theory) taking precedence over domestic law, according to Article 90 of the Constitution of Turkey (so amended in 2004).
President Tayyip Erdoğan has arrested hundreds of journalists, closed or taken over dozens of media outlets, and prevented journalists and their families from traveling.