Press releases > Prisoner Release
North Thanet's MP. Sir Roger Gale has today (Monday 12th May) welcomed the release of Turkish journalist Mrs Fusun Erdogan from detention after eight years in prison.

Speaking at the meeting of the Council of Europe media committee, of which he is Chairman, and opening a conference on "The Role of National Parliaments in Media Governance In Europe", Sir Roger said:
"We had intended to visit Mrs. Erdogan in prison tomorrow morning. I am pleased to be able to say that she was released four days ago, however, and she has joined us here today".  Later in the meeting Sir Roger's vice-chairman, Mrs Gulsun Bilgehan MP, was able to announce that during the course of the day a further group of imprisoned journalists had been released.

"This is where the Council of Europe, representing 47 countries rather than the 27 of the European Union, can be really effective" said Sir Roger. "a free press is vital to democracy and that has never been clearer than today as journalists are risking their lives to expose the truths in Afghanistan, in Ukraine and in other former Soviet states. We are working towards a system that will offer real protection and safety for journalists going about their lawful business and we shall be making forceful recommendations to the Secretary General and to the Council of Ministers to seek to ensure a practical and hard-nosed system that will provide monitoring of the media and early warning as and when things start to go wrong.  Time was when the word "Press" emblazoned on a jacket offered protection. In some counties it is now regarded as a target. We have to put an end to that"


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