‘Afrika’ Receives Messages of Support

Co-chairman of the United Cyprus Party-Communal Liberation Party New Forces (BKP-TKP), Izzet Izcan said that they strongly condemned the attack against ‘Afrika’ newspaper.

Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Afrika’ recently published an offensive cartoon which included an image of Turkish President Erdogan and has faced angry criticism from politicians in the TRNC and Turkey.

In a written statement, Izcan stressed that the BKP will continue to stand by ‘Afrika’ newspaper and the freedom of press, as it has been always done. He argued that the attack was mainly against the Turkish Cypriot people and for this reason, the BKP sees as unavoidable the establishment of the broadest democratic front against fascists and the enemies of peace. He added that the Cyprus settlement and its inclusion in international law as sovereign over the whole country, will be the answer to all these attacks. He concluded by saying that the BKP will continue to stand by newspaper editor Sener Levent and his newspaper ‘Afrika’.

In another article, Yeni Duzen reports that Tahir Olcay Kirac, chairman of the Foreign Press Association, noted that the polemics which emerged after the cartoon was published, showed once again, how important and difficult is a journalist’s profession.

In a written statement, Kirac noted that the freedom of expression as other freedoms, are not without limits and added that the line of the freedom of press is drawn with common sense. Furthermore, Kirac asserted that this inappropriate caricature targeting President Erdogan is clearly a criminal offense according to “article 154 of the TRNC’s criminal code.”

Meanwhile, the paper reports that the Press Workers’ Union (Basin-Sen) expressed its support for ‘Afrika’ newspaper, stating that they were sick of discussions and threats about cartoons.

In a written statement, Basin-Sen stressed: “An ugly caricature was drawn by a Greek artist and Afrika newspaper published it with the heading ‘with Greek’s eye’. If we want to react to this, the correct address is not Afrika newspaper that brought this cartoon to our attention, but the Greek artist who drew this ugly caricature. No one has the right to threaten us in our own land and to express clearly that will interfere with our justice system”.

Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Kibris Postasi’ columnist Levent Ozadam, criticised the statement by Turkish Deputy Prime Minister responsible for Cypriot Affairs Recep Akdag, about the cartoon. He wondered why should an important minister use such harsh expressions, adding that the caricature was not drawn by any journalist in ‘Afrika’. He added that if the newspaper had committed a crime, then it would be judged in the courts. He further wondered why the Turkish authorities did not make a single comment about the Greek cartoonist and those who originally published it.

Yeni Duzen, Kibris Postasi

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