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    Journalists and Turkish intellectuals shout slogans during a demonstration on December 26, 2015 in Istanbul, following the arrest of Cumhuriyet newspaper's Editor in Chief

    Turkish Nobel Laureate: EU Turning Blind Eye to Lack of Democracy in Turkey

    © AFP 2019 / OZAN KOSE
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    The world-acclaimed writer Orhan Pamuk has accused the EU of turning a blind eye to the sorry state of democracy in Turkey.

    "They have forgotten all their values… They are looking to us as they looked to Saudi Arabia once upon a time: If (Turkey) is doing what we want, we don't care what they do at home," Pamuk told the Istanbul-based Hurriyet newspaper in an interview, referring to the EU.

    He added that the fight against the Islamic State group and the migrant crisis hasd "tied Europe's hands.".

    Speaking about the recent developments in Turkey, Orhan Pamuk mentioned the detention of leading opposition journalists Can Dundar and Erdem Gul on charges of revealing classified information and expressed his solidarity with both.

    "You cannot sit and write your novel when Can Dundar is in jail… In democratic countries, people do not have to repeat like a parrot the opinions of the (party) that won the last election," he emphasized.

    On Wednesday prosecutors demanded life sentences for two journalists in a case being seen as a clampdown on freedom of speech.

    Prosecutors want the editor-in-chief of the Cumhuriyet newspaper, Can Dundar, and its Ankara bureau chief, Erdem Gul, each to be handed one aggravated life sentence, one ordinary life sentence and 30 years in jail, according to the Dogan news agency, which saw was covering the indictment.

    A report by Cumhuriyet had alleged that a shipment of weapons seized at the border in January 2014 was going to rebels in Syria.

    It also claimed that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the head of Turkish intelligence, Hakan Fidan, were both in on the deal.

    Shortly after the report was published an enraged President Erdogan demanded that a criminal case be opened against the newspaper and its editor-in-chief.

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    Tags:
    European Union, blind eye, opposition journalists, lack of democracy, writer, detention, Orhan Pamuk, Erdem Gul, Can Dundar, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey
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