Sunday

25th Feb 2018

Letter

A letter from Turkey's ambassador to the EU

  • The ambassador wrote this letter in response to an opinion article by Selcuk Gultasi about the trial of journalists from the Zaman newspaper. (Photo: svenwerk)

Following publication on Tuesday (19 September) of an opinion article by Selcuk Gultasi about the trial of journalists from the Zaman newspaper, EUobserver received this letter by Turkey's envoy to the EU, Faruk Kaymakci, which we published as a right of reply:

I wish to express at the outset that, thanks to EUobserver's balanced coverage, we are able to follow developments closely on a wide range of issues related to the European Union, here at the Permanent Delegation of Turkey to the EU.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Hence, it came to our attention that an opinion article by Zaman newspaper's Brussels bureau chief had been published on your website on Tuesday. With all due respect to your editorial independence and the decision to publish the said piece, I deem it necessary to bring to your consideration the following:

The article in question is yet another attempt to whitewash the Fetullahist Terrorist Organisation (FETO) which blatantly orchestrated - coming to light as confessions by FETO military operatives accumulate - the 15 July failed coup attempt.

In connection to this, it must be emphasised that Zaman newspaper had served as a mouthpiece of FETO, which tried to violently overthrow the democratically elected government, assassinate our president (Recep Tayyip Erdogan) and ultimately hijack the sovereignty of the Turkish people on the eve of 15 July 2016.

The article also aims at distorting the ongoing legal proceedings against the putschists, by ultimately tarnishing the image of Turkey in the eyes of the EU public opinion with unfounded claims against the independence of the judiciary, as well as the purported lack of freedom of press and expression.

The fact of the matter is that Turkey, having survived a bloody coup attempt which cost the lives of 250 citizens, is fighting against the scourge of terrorism on multiple fronts - Daesh, PKK and FETO - in accordance with our national legislation, in line with the principles of the rule of law, and in observance of our international obligations.

Within these well-defined limits, no media outlet nor journalist in Turkey is detained for their journalistic activities, but face legal charges for alleged criminal links and actions. The legal rights of all journalists facing trial are under protection. They benefit from legal assistance and other related defence rights.

Contrary to the false claims and accusations in the said article, utmost attention is needed to avoid meddling with the course of justice.

I am of the conviction that EUobserver readers and the wider EU public have the right to form their opinion against this backdrop.

Hence, I kindly urge you to publish this communication in the format that suits your publication's editorial layout. Should you decide to take the idea on board, I would very much appreciate to be informed about how it would appear beforehand.

Looking forward to your positive cooperation,

Yours sincerely,

Faruk Kaymakci

We invited the Turkish mission to the EU to address specific allegations contained in Selcuk Gultasi's opinion article. In his answer to that, Kaymakci said: "I believe to have sufficiently debunked the baseless claims and accusations in the said article which aims at discrediting the Turkish judiciary and grossly misrepresenting the putschist Fetullahist Terrorist Organisation (FETO) as a benign 'faith-based movement'."

Turkish journalists on trial for fake crimes

Journalists from Turkey's Zaman newspaper stand trial this week on fake charges that include "perception engineering" and "violating the rights of statesmen".

Overcoming the plot against Turkish democracy

One year after an attempted coup, what Turkey needs is not biased and groundless criticism but more cooperation, dialogue and understanding, writes its Europe minister Omer Celik.

Turkey poised for first EU budget cut

"Turkey is going in a direction that is the very opposite of EU standards," Siegfried Muresan, the MEP spearheading the cuts, has said.

Greek government's steady steps to exit bailout programme

Growth predictions are positive, exports increasing, unemployment dropping and credit-ratings up, says the head of Greece's Syriza delegation to the European Parliament. Now the government in Athens is looking to design its own reform programme.

News in Brief

  1. EU calls for immediate ceasefire in Syria
  2. UK's post-Brexit vision is 'pure illusion', Tusk says
  3. EU leaders express solidarity with Cyprus in Turkey drill row
  4. EU to double funding for Sahel forces
  5. EU parliament president: 'The immigration problem is Africa'
  6. May to unveil EU departure strategy next week
  7. Pregnant workers may be dismissed, EU court rules
  8. Romanian minister demands anti-corruption prosecutor fired

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. ILGA EuropeAnkara Ban on LGBTI Events Continues as Turkish Courts Reject NGO Appeals
  2. Aid & Trade LondonJoin Thousands of Stakeholders of the Global Aid Industry at Aid & Trade London
  3. Macedonian Human Rights Movement Int.European Free Alliance Joins MHRMI to End the Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations
  4. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism Year to Promote Business and Mutual Ties
  5. European Jewish CongressAt “An End to Antisemitism!” Conference, Dr. Kantor Calls for Ambitious Solutions
  6. UNESDAA Year Ago UNESDA Members Pledged to Reduce Added Sugars in Soft Drinks by 10%
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsUzbekistan: Investigate Torture of Journalist
  8. CESICESI@Noon on ‘Digitalisation & Future of Work: Social Protection For All?’ - March 7
  9. UNICEFExecutive Director's Committment to Tackling Sexual Exploitation and Abuse of Children
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersState of the Nordic Region 2018: Facts, Figures and Rankings of the 74 Regions
  11. Mission of China to the EUDigital Economy Shaping China's Future, Over 30% of GDP
  12. Macedonian Human Rights Movement Int.Suing the Governments of Macedonia and Greece for Changing Macedonia's Name

Latest News

  1. EU agrees budget to focus on defence, security and migration
  2. EU leaders nix transnational lists, cool on 'Spitzenkandidat'
  3. Regions chief: calls for smaller EU budget are 'impossible'
  4. Election fever picks up This WEEK
  5. EU-Morocco fishing deal casts doubt on EU future foreign policy
  6. EU leaders put 'Spitzenkandidat' on summit menu
  7. European far-right political party risks collapse
  8. The key budget issues on EU leaders' table