World Press Freedom Day Message from Fethullah Gulen

May 3, 2019 – Today I join the United Nations and the global community in paying tribute to journalists around the world, including those who endure obstacles to ensure that the public is informed. This day is a reminder to us for the importance of protecting fundamental human rights and freedoms and respecting freedom of expression and freedom of the press.

Unfortunately, journalists are being threatened and are facing violence on a daily basis across the globe, especially in Turkey, which has been called the world’s worst jailers of journalists. Autocratic regimes are fearful of a free media because they know that their wrongdoings will be exposed. Every effort is done to curb the media’s ability to speak the truth, including through firing, threatening, and in some cases even torturing and killing.

At a time when the world is swathed in a culture of fear and intolerance to diversity of opinions, it is now more important than ever to not turn a blind eye to silencing of journalists, who are an essential part of democracy. We should celebrate their bravery and publicize their plight so that their voices and their stories are heard. I celebrate the World Press Freedom Day of all journalists around the world and of everyone who values freedom of speech and freedom of press.

About Fethullah Gülen 

Fethullah Gülen is an Islamic scholar, preacher and social advocate, whose decades-long commitment to education, interfaith dialogue and altruism has inspired millions in Turkey and around the world. Gülen is the honorary chairman of the Rumi Forum, Washington, DC and the Intercultural Dialogue Platform, Brussels, Belgium.

About Alliance for Shared Values 

The Alliance for Shared Values (AFSV) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that serves as a voice for cultural organizations affiliated with Hizmet, a civil society movement inspired by prominent preacher and peace advocate Fethullah Gülen. The Alliance strives to promote peace and social harmony by helping reduce misinformation and false stereotypes about any or all ethnic, cultural and religious communities. To learn more about the Alliance, please visit

Media contact 212-682-4278

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