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12/09/2021 Turkey (International Christian Concern) – This week, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) released a report regarding the arrest and detention of journalists in 2021, naming Turkey as the sixth worst jailer of journalists. According to the CPJ, although Turkey released two this year, 18 journalists remain incarcerated in Turkish jails, a violation of the freedom of speech and freedom of the press.

The report comes amidst growing criticism of Turkey’s human rights record, including its religious freedom violations. In addition to suppressing freedom of religion for Turkey’s Christian population, Turkey continues to suffocate Christian heritage in its foreign engagements in Artsakh, Cyprus, and Iraq.

In its recent Persecutor of the Year Report for 2021, International Christian Concern named Turkey and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as among the worst persecutors of Christians in the past year. Turkey was also highlighted in a recent update from the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, depicting the religious freedom conditions in the country as remaining poor.

The recent report from CPJ illustrates a pattern happening in Turkey of a continual decline of human rights in the country. Although Turkey remains a close ally of the United States and a military partner as part of NATO, U.S. officials must pressure their Turkish counterparts to preserve human for the people of Turkey.

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