Turkey, Europe

European Parliament bans Turkey's Daily Sabah

Decision comes one week after Dutch MEP's request to cancel distribution of newspaper published in English

23.03.2017
European Parliament bans Turkey's Daily Sabah

Ankara

By Hasan Esen

BRUSSELS

The president of the European Parliament has banned the distribution of Turkey's Daily Sabah at the parliament following a campaign by a Dutch MEP.

President Antonia Tajani made the decision Wednesday following an “investigation” upon the initiative of Jeroen Lenaers, a member of the European Parliament from the Christian Democratic Appeal party.

Daily Sabah said Thursday Marjory van den Broeke, head of the press unit of the EP, confirmed the decision, saying "some [members of parliament] were not happy with your paper".

Leaners had requested the ban in a letter to Tajani last week, after Daily Sabah published a story with the headline: "EU acts as if Dutch attack on democratic rights never happened."

In a statement last weekend, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said there would be a "retaliation" against the decision.

Turkey's Directorate General of Press and Information (BYEGM) has also condemned the EP's decision, calling it a "black mark" in the history of press.

"This decision without any legal justification constitutes a heavy blow to not only Daily Sabah and Turkish press but also to concepts such as fundamental human rights and tolerance in Europe, which claims to be the heart of modern democracy, and is also an example of the battered press freedom in Europe.

"We strongly condemn the outdated and prejudiced decision of the President of the European Parliament and wish that this arbitrary decision would be reversed as soon as possible," BYEGM said in a written statement on Thursday.

Daily Sabah, which was established in 2014, had been distributed in the European Parliament only on Tuesdays.

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