Europe

Turkey targets Dogan media 'terror propaganda'

Hurriyet offices damaged by protesters (8 Sept) Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Demonstrators attacked Hurriyet's offices last week, claiming the paper misquoted the president

Turkish prosecutors have begun an inquiry into a big media group, after photos were published of dead soldiers, state-run Anadolu news agency says.

The inquiry into the Dogan group, which owns Hurriyet newspaper and part owns CNN Turk TV, also involves an interview with an alleged Kurdish PKK militant.

A ceasefire between Turkey and the PKK unravelled in July and the conflict has escalated in recent weeks.

As tensions increased, protesters attacked Hurriyet's offices last week.

Pro-government demonstrators accused the paper of misquoting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

There were also attacks on another newspaper, Daily Sabah, as well as a number of offices belonging to the pro-Kurdish HDP party.

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Image caption President Erdogan attended a soldier's funeral last week but Nokta magazine mocked up a picture of him taking a selfie

Anadolu news agency said prosecutors moved against Dogan after a pro-government newspaper said Hurriyet had used uncensored pictures of fallen Turkish soldiers.

On Monday, police raided a weekly news magazine, Nokta, seizing copies of its latest issue, whose cover had a mock-up picture, showing President Erdogan taking a selfie at a soldier's funeral.

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Media captionMark Lowen inspects the recent scars of battle in the Turkish town of Cizre

Insulting the president is considered a crime in Turkey and carries a prison term of more than four years.

Dozens of people have been killed in the conflict in the east of the country, which is taking place as Turks prepare for another general election. In June, the ruling AK Party lost its majority in parliament and has since failed to persuade other parties to join a coalition.

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Image caption Some of the worst fighting has been in the south-eastern city of Cizre where many people have died

Some of the worst fighting has been in the mainly Kurdish city of Cizre in south-eastern Turkey, where the government says 31 militants have been killed. The HDP says 23 civilians died there.

Critics of Mr Erdogan have accused him of using the collapse of the ceasefire to curb support for the HDP, whose share of the vote in June cost his party its majority.

They also say he has tried to silence both mainstream and social media ahead of 1 November elections.

Mr Erdogan became president in August 2014, after several years as prime minister, and has vowed to bolster the powers of the presidency.

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