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Protest coverage leaves 59 Turkish journalists without jobs

July 23, 2013 at 11:31 AM

ISTANBUL, Turkey, July 23 (UPI) -- Twenty-two Turkish journalists were fired and 37 others resigned in connection with coverage of a May protest in Istanbul's Gezi Park, their union said.

The Istanbul branch of the Turkish Journalists Union, known by its Turkish initials TGS, said the group worked "hard for the public's right to be informed and they paid for it with their jobs," Today's Zaman reported.

"These dismissals and resignations are mostly related to censorship policies followed by some media outlets in dealing with the Gezi Park resistance," said Gokhan Durmus, head of the TGS Istanbul branch.

Durmus said some journalists were censored, some had their TV programs shut down and others were fired over their tweets.

A small group of environmentalists began a sit-in in Gezi Park May 27 to protest government plans to build barracks.

In a related development, the Republican People's Party told Hurriyet Daily News that 64 journalists are under arrest in Turkey and another 123 are facing trial on terrorism charges.

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