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Turkish PM confused about Greece

Criticized by European Commission about press freedom issues in Turkey, Prime Minister Recep T. Erdogan said (they) should be concerned about Greece first. Erdogan also criticized the treatment of Muslim minorities in Greece.

Last week police in Turkey went practically door to door to confiscate copies of an unpublished book by Ahmet Sik, an investigative journalist. Allegedly the book propagates an underground establishment by retired high-brass military officials to establish a military junta in Turkey. However opinion leaders in the country argue under the veil of this investigation, government is trying to silence opposition by jailing influential journalists whose number totals 163 as of today. Many of these people are held in jail without convictions for up to three years now.

Recent arrests and house searches without warrants alerted European Union officials and foreign press concerning human rights and freedom of speech in Turkey. Today, a member of European Parliament anonymously declared that Turkey is in breach of political criteria to become a member of the Union.

Turkey is a candidate for full membership in the European Union, but has a very poor record on civil liberties and human rights.

Muslim minorities in Greece enjoy all constitutional rights as full citizens whereas in Turkey large Kurdish, Armenian, and a small Greek minority are discriminated in their dealings with government organizations and mostly do not have basic rights such as the right of education in mother tongue.

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