Critical media outlets unable to cover ErdoIan casting vote

Several journalists from media outlets critical of the government including STV, the Cihan news agency, Bugandun TV, Kanaltandurk and the SandOzcandu daily were prevented from filming or observing the moment when President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his family cast their votes in Sundayand’s general election.
Erdogan, his wife Emine and their daughter Sandumeyye cast their votes at the Saffet andcebi secondary school in the anduskandudar district of Istanbul, but certain journalists of media outlets critical of Erdogan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) were barred by Erdoganand’s bodyguards from entering the school and covering what is a traditional election day news item.
Extraordinary security measures were in place outside the school — with large numbers of barricades erected around the venue — while Erdogan cast his vote inside.
After voting at the same venue, main opposition Republican Peopleand’s Party (CHP) deputy Mahmut Tanal issued a statement about the exaggerated security precautions in place for the presidentand’s vote. He added: andquotI condemn the discriminatory implementation against certain journalists by barring them from covering Erdogan casting his vote. This injustice means [it has been] done against all of us and not only these journalists.andquot
Erdogan and the government are consistently criticized for pressuring independent media outlets after the countryand’s massive corruption scandal implicating then-Prime Minister Erdoganand’s inner circle and key government officials was revealed on Dec. 17, 2013. In the immediate aftermath and ever since, Erdogan has been accusing certain segments of society of creating and using the graft scandal revelations to bring down the government.
Since then, many anti-democratic and anti-freedom laws have been enacted by Parliament to stifle fundamental freedoms, including freedom of the press. Many journalists have also been detained or faced prison terms on the grounds that they have either insulted Erdogan or somehow damaged the state.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman