Statement Marking the United Nations World Press Freedom Day
May 3, 2021– Today, on the United Nations’ World Press Freedom Day, the Alliance for Shared Values joins the international community in recognizing the importance of having an independent press for a free and open society. We also advocate for the journalists and media outlets who are suppressed and imprisoned for their efforts to provide one of the most important public goods—verified and reliable information.
One of the worst countries for independent journalists remains Turkey, a leading jailer of journalists in the world, where more than 200 have been imprisoned over the last five years. We denounce the Turkish government’s continued suppression of journalists and dissidents as well as the government’s decision to exclude them from the roughly one-third of prisoners released during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The unsafe and inadequate prison conditions amount to constant torture and, for some, a death sentence.
As participants of the Hizmet Movement, we strive to be staunch advocates of political freedom, human dignity, and universal human rights, and we take this opportunity to reflect on the obstacles faced by independent journalists around the world.