The Malta Independent 18 August 2019, Sunday

Casa meets with Turkish Ambassador over Pelin Ünker charges

Tuesday, 23 April 2019, 14:27 Last update: about 5 months ago

PN Head of Delegation David Casa met with Turkish Ambassador to the Republic of Malta H.E. Kerem Kiratli to discuss the case of investigative journalist Pelin Ünker and the deteriorating state of media freedom in Turkey, a statement from the MEP's office said.

“Pelin Ünker is facing multiple cases against her after she reported factually on the Paradise Papers. In one of those cases the charges have been dropped but a 13 month sentence for imprisonment still hangs over her head. The charges in this case must also be dropped”, stated David Casa. 

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Casa presented the Ambassador with a declaration signed by MEPs from across the political spectrum calling for the charges against Ünker to be dropped and for Turkey to respect the European Convention of Human Rights. 

“I have brought the serious concerns of Members of the European Parliament to the attention of the Ambassador and I have been assured that our concerns were noted”. 

David Casa visited Pelin Ünker in Istanbul earlier this year where he met with her legal team and representatives of organizations working to protect investigative journalists in the country. Pelin Ünker also visited Malta as David Casa’s guest and addressed the vigil in honour of Daphne Caruana Galizia. 

“We also discussed a number of important issues on which EU-Turkey cooperation has proved vital, in particular on migration and combatting terrorism. Open dialogue and constructive criticism are crucial. I am thankful to the Ambassador for the frank and robust exchange and look forward to future cooperation with him”, stated Casa.

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