Turkey’s jailing of writers has received increasing attention in both the Turkish and the international press, enough to force Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan to defend the fact that Turkey has more journalists in prison, describing them as “so-called journalists” who “ are actually “police murderers, sexual molesters and supporters of a coup”.
In 2011 Turkey imprisoned 104 journalists, causing Reporters Without Borders to drop Turkey’s press freedom ranking to 148th in the world. Either the country has one of the most vicious and corrupt press corps in modern history or these arrests are politically motivated. However, the Prime Minister will have none of this. When American Ambassador to Turkey Francis Ricciardone stated that he was unable to understand the massive arrests, he was dismissed by Erdogan as a “rookie ambassador” who just didn’t understand Turkey.