Committee to Protect Journalists slams Turkey over media rights

Journalists and protesters hold placards outside an Istanbul court on October 31, 2017, calling for the release of jailed colleagues, including Turkish reporter Ahmet Şık. (AP Photo)
Short Url
Updated 24 June 2020

Committee to Protect Journalists slams Turkey over media rights

  • CPJ criticized Turkish plans to resume trials following a three-month suspension prompted by the pandemic
  • According to Reporters Without Borders, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has waged a “witch-hunt” against journalists since the 2016 coup attempt

LONDON: The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has called on Turkey to stop prosecuting journalists, and to ensure that necessary safety precautions are taken in court to protect defendants during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The international NGO, which is dedicated to protecting the rights of journalists worldwide, criticized Turkish plans to resume trials following a three-month suspension prompted by the pandemic.

“The sheer number of trials targeting Turkish journalists shows authorities’ contempt and hostility towards the media. This situation is even more unacceptable during the coronavirus pandemic,” said CPJ Europe and Central Asia Program Coordinator Gulnoza Said.

“Turkish authorities must stop putting journalists on trial for their reporting; if they will not drop their charges against members of the press, they must at least ensure journalists can attend court safely.”

Independent news website Bianet said court reporters in Istanbul have been concerned that courts are not properly following COVID-19 safety guidelines.

The reporters have said the pandemic has had a serious impact on the running of the courts, with many trials starting late and proper notes not being taken during trials.

Turkey is among the worst countries in the world for its treatment of journalists. According to Reporters Without Borders, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has waged a “witch-hunt” against journalists since the 2016 coup attempt.

The campaign of repression has earned Turkey the unenviable title of the world’s biggest jailer of professional journalists.


MBC Group to bring Rotana Media’s channels and content to Shahid VIP

Updated 24 November 2020

MBC Group to bring Rotana Media’s channels and content to Shahid VIP

  • Rotana’s TV content will also be made available on-demand so that subscribers can watch it anytime

DUBAI: MBC Group and Rotana Media Group, the largest media companies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, are joining forces to bring Rotana’s TV channels to Shahid VIP, MBC Group’s premium subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) platform.

Commenting on the partnership, MBC chairman, Waleed Al-Ibrahim said: “One year ago we signed our first partnership with Rotana Media Group, which contributed immensely to the Shahid VIP success story in 2020. Taking our collaboration to the next level was a natural step as we continue to enhance the Shahid VIP value proposition.”

Rotana’s TV content will also be made available on-demand so that subscribers can watch it anytime, anywhere, in the region. The long-term partnership will allow Shahid VIP to expand its Arabic content offering as it continues to deliver on its mission to entertain MENA audiences through a best-in-class streaming service.

Rotana’s award-winning TV channels – including Rotana Cinema, Rotana Khalijia, Rotana+, Rotana Classic, Rotana Kids, Rotana Drama and Rotana Music) – went live in high definition on Shahid VIP from Nov. 22 across the MENA region. Additionally, Rotana’s content will be available on-demand from December.

Walid Arab Hashem, CEO of Rotana Studios & TV

Walid Arab Hashem, CEO of Rotana Studios and TV, said: “We are delighted to conclude this groundbreaking deal with MBC Group and offer Rotana channels and content on its very successful platform Shahid VIP. We are true believers in the value of Arabic entertainment and its local, regional and international appeal, and we look forward to having a long-term relationship with MBC as a means to serve our audiences.”