Detained journalists urge EU not to compromise with Turkey over human rights

Detained journalists urge EU not to compromise with Turkey over human rights

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Police use tear-inducing agent against demonstrators during a protest over the arrest of journalists …

ANKARA (Reuters) – Two Turkish journalists arrested this week over their reports approximately arms supplies to Syria urged the European Union not to compromise on human rights & freedoms to reach an agreement with Turkey to assist stem flows of migrants to Europe.

European diplomats have been measured in their criticism of media freedom in Turkey & President Tayyip Erdogan's increasingly authoritarian rule, recognizing the West needs Ankara's assist on the migrant crisis & as an ally in the U.S.-led coalition against Islamic State.

European & Turkish officials hope EU leaders & Turkey's Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu will sign a deal to ease the migrant crisis on Sunday.

p> Writing from Silivri prison near Istanbul, Can Dundar, editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet newspaper, which is left-wing, secular & often critical of the government, & senior editor Erdem Gul said in a letter to EU leaders they hope Sunday's meeting results in a lasting solution, adding:

"We would moreover like to hope that your desire to end the crisis will not stand in the way of your sensitivity towards human rights, freedom of press & expression as fundamental values of the Western world." 

A court on Thursday ordered the arrest of the two journalists over the publication of footage purporting to show the state intelligence agency helping send weapons to Syria.

The U.S. embassy criticized the arrests & the Council of Europe's human rights commissioner Nils Muiznieks described them as "another blow to media freedom in Turkey".

(Reporting by Gulsen Solaker; Writing by Dasha Afanasieva; Editing by Dominic Evans)

Politics & GovernmentHuman RightsTurkeyEuropean Unionhuman rights

Source: “Reuters”

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