Table of contents
2.1 Image of the countries
2.2 Freedom of the press
2.2.1 Definition freedom
2.2.2 Definition press
2.3 Juridical conditions
2.3.1 Freedom of the press in Germany
2.3.2 Freedom of the press in Turkey
3. The different implementation of the freedom of the
press in both countries
3.1 Offer and use of the press
3.2 Actual situation
Always when an editorial office was rummaged; Always when reproaches of the phone tapping or persecution of journalists arises; Always then the discussion about the freedom of the press awakes and the following questions arise: To what extent is it upheld and protected? Are there borders? May the state interfere?1
If freedom of the press is understood as a synonym for freedom of speech and mental freedom, it wins a historically far-reaching dimension. The right of the freedom of speech was considered in the Greek democracy and Roman republic as a self-evident fact. On the other hand, for the first time the Roman law of the Twelve Tables revealed qualifying regulations in 450 B.C.E. Mockery poems and abusive poems were threatened in it even with the punishment by death. A censorship was still unknown for the purposes of our today's modern state right.2
In the following segment the basic concepts and their definitions are cleared under the point "Basics”. Further, a representation of both countries Germany and Turkey takes place. Consequently, the countries geographic situation and the state form are closer explained and moreover a showing of the juridical basic conditions occurs regarding to the freedom of the press of both countries. In the third segment of the term paper the different implementation of the freedom of the press in both countries is revealed. On this occasion, a universal line is drawn with the help of the research question and the thesis statement:
1) Research question: Why is the freedom of the press in Germany more
guaranteed than in Turkey?
2) Thesis statement: The freedom of the press in Germany is more guaranteed than in Turkey, because the Turkish government changes laws in the Criminal Code over and over again or delete them even completely; apart from the numerous restrictions in the constitution concerning “the protection of the national security”.
This term paper is finally rounded off with a conclusion in which the compiled knowledge is brought together in an overview.
2.1 Image of the countries
This chapter contains a short image of the countries which shows among other things the basics for this term paper. It concerns the countries Germany and Turkey and exposes the geographical situation, inhabitants, land surface, capital, religion, form of government as well as the economic situation.
The Federal Republic of Germany is located in Central Europe and borders on the countries the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Austria, Czech, Poland and Denmark. The population amount to 81.8 million inhabitants among whom 8.8 percent are foreigners. The land surface of the federal republic amounts to a total of 357,050 km2 with Berlin as the capital. The national language is German. In addition there are minority languages like Frisian, Sorbian, Danish and Romans.3 The religion shows a homogeneous distribution: 33 percent of the population belongs to the Protestant and also 33 percent to the Catholic Church. Further, four percent are Muslims and 108,000 people are Jews.4
The federal republic is a democratic, parliamentary federal state. Federal President Joachim Gauck holds the position of the head of state since March, 2012. The Federal Chancellor is Angela Merkel since November, 2005. Since the elections in 2009 Guido Westerwelle takes over the function of the foreign minister.5 The German parliament "Bundestag” consists of 620 representatives (members of parliament) who are elected for four years and represent the nation. The members of the governments from these 16 federal states form the Federal Council of Germany, called the "Bundesrat”. The Prime Minister of a federal state has the chance to get appointed for the position as the Federal councilor president, called the "Bundesrat”- president, for one year.6 The economy in Germany belongs to the strongest worldwide: In 2011 the gross domestic product (GDP) amounted to 2,570.8 billion Euros, this corresponds to a pro-head-GDP at the rate of 31.416 Euro. The rate of unemployment in Germany amounts currently to 7.0 percent.7
The republic Turkey extends geographically more than two continents and connects Europe and Asia with each other. It builds an interface between the Middle East, the Caucasus and Southeast Europe.8 The population amounts to 73.7 million with a growth rate of 1.6 percent. The land surface encompasses 814.578 km 2, this corresponds to the 2.3-fold size of Germany.9 Ankara represents with 4.7 million inhabitants the capital of Turkey. The official national language is Turkish. In some parts of the east and southeast of Turkey also different Kurdish languages are spoken.10 Since the ottoman time Muslims form the majority of the Turkish population with approximately 99 percent. According to unofficial estimates about 60,000 Armenian Christians, 23,000 Jews, 15,000 Syrian-orthodox, 10,000 Bahai, 35004000 Greek-orthodox, 2000 Jeziden, 2500 Protestants and about 2500 members of the Roman-Catholic church belong to the religious minorities.11
Turkey is a republic or parliamentary democracy with Abdullah Gül as the current Federal President. The government is headed by the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Since 2009 the position of the foreign minister is hold by Prof. Dr. Ahmet Davutoglu. The parliament of Turkey is called the „Great National Assembly of Turkey" (Türkiye Büyük Millet Meclisi/TBMM) and consists of 540 seats. At the last parliamentary election in 2011 Cemil Çiçek was elected for the parliamentary president. The legislative period amounts four years.12 In 2010 the gross domestic product amounted to 735.26 billion dollars. With a population number of 73.7 million inhabitants the gross domestic product per head results in 9,890 dollars per inhabitant. The rate of unemployment presently amounts to 14.5 percent.13
2.2 Freedom of the press
The freedom of the press is known for speaking out or printing contents and information freely and publicly. The media which are used to practice the freedom of the press are primarily books, newspapers, magazines, radio, television and electronic documents on computer networks14.
1) „Freedom to publish anything without censorship before or after. Freedom of the press has been debated since modern printing began in the 1400s. Some governments place limits on this freedom, fearing the power of words to spur people to act against them. "15
2.2.1 Definition of freedom
Freedom is the ability to act or be done as one wishes, not under the control of another or affected by another.16
“The power or right to act, speak or think as one wants... The Power of selfdetermination attributed to the will"17
2.2.2 Definition of press
Press is the comprising term for a part of the journalism: Newspaper, magazines as well as television news. Beside the pure news press (newspaper), the political ones and the entertainment press as well as the business press and tabloids take important positions.18
“An act of pressing or publishing something in a newspaper or magazine by a journalist"19
2.3 Juridical conditions
In this segment the law situation is described due to the freedom of the press in Germany and in Turkey with the help of the respective sections of each constitution.
2.3.1 Freedom of the press in Germany
The constitutional-juridical basics of the freedom of the press in Germany are regulated by the first two paragraphs in the section 5 of the German constitution "Grundgesetz”20:
1) „ Jeder hat das Recht, seine Meinung in Wort, Schrift und Bild frei zu äußern und zu verbreiten und sich aus allgemein zugänglichen Quellen ungehindert zu unterrichten. Die Pressefreiheit und die Freiheit der Berichterstattung durch Rundfunk und Film werden gewährleistet. Eine Zensur findet nicht statt.21
2) Diese Rechte finden ihre Schranken in den Vorschriften der allgemeinen Gesetze, den gesetzlichen Bestimmungen zum Schutze der Jugend und in dem Recht der persönlichen Ehre.22
The section outlines that everybody has the right to express his opinion in word, writing and picture freely. Furthermore, to spread and to inform oneself unimpeded from generally accessible sources. The freedom of the press and the freedom of the reporting by broadcasting and film are guaranteed. A censorship does not take place.23 These rights find their barriers in the regulations of the general laws, the legal determinations for the protection of the youth and in the right of the personal honor.24
The freedom of the press and the freedom of speech is therefore a constitutional-juridical protected good.25 In addition, the juridical position of the press is prescribed in the press laws of the federal states. Numerous legal determinations are valid for all mass media.26 In the international ranking Germany takes a short-cut very well. In the ranking of the "reporters without borders” (Reporter ohne Grenzen) Germany reached the 16th place.27
2.3.2 Freedom of the press in Turkey
The freedom of the press in Turkey is regulated by lacking independence of the justice and a huge number of press-hostile laws.28 Up to 2004 the freedom of the press was regulated in the press law of 1950.29 The present press law is written down in section 28 of the Turkish constitution:
“Basin hürdür, sansür edilemez. Basimevi kurmak izin alma ve malí teminat yatirma §artma baglanamaz. Devlet, basin ve haber alma hürriyetlerini saglayacak tedbirleri alir. Basin hürriyetinin sinirlanmasinda, Anayasanin 26 ve 27 nci maddeleri hükümleri uygulanir. Devletin iç ve di§ güvenligini, ülkesi ve milletiyle bölünmez bütünlügünü tehdit eden veya suç içlemeye ya da ayaklanma veya isyana teçvik eder nitelikte olan veya Devlete ait gizli bilgilere ili§kin bulunan her türlü haber veya yaziyi, yazanlar veya bastiranlar veya ayni amaçla, basanlar, ba§kasina verenler, bu suçlara ait kanun hükümleri uyarinca sorumlu olurlar. Tedbir yolu ile dagitim hâkim karariyla; gecikmesinde sakinca bulunan hallerde de kanunun açikça yetkili kildigi merciin emriyle önlenebilir. Dagitimi önleyen yetkili merci, bu kararini en geç yirmidört saat içinde yetkili hâkime bildirir. Yetkili hâkim bu karari en geç kirksekiz saat içinde onaylamazsa, dagitimi önleme karari hükümsüz sayilir.’30
The section outlines that the press is free and a censorship does not take place. The foundation of printers may not be bound to the condition of an approval or the achievement of a financial security. The state takes the measures to the guarantee of the freedom of the press and freedom of information. The restriction of the freedom of the press goes back to the regulations of the sections 26 and 27 of the constitution. An institution or a natural person who prints news or writings which threaten the internal and external security of the state, the unity of state and the population or just to encourage the celebration of a criminal offence or to uprising or turmoil or stand in connection with confidential information of the state is responsible according to the regulations of the law concerning these criminal offences.31
Section 26: "Dü§ünceyi açiklama ve yayma hürriyeti” ("freedom and dissemination of speech”)
“Herkes, dü§ünce ve kanaatlerini söz, yazi, resim veya ba§ka yollarla tek ba§ina veya toplu olarak açiklama ve yayma hakkina sahiptir Bu hürriyetlerin kullanilmasi, millî güvenlik, kamu düzeni, kamu güvenligi, Cumhuriyetin temel nitelikleri ve Devletin ülkesi ve milleti ile bölünmez bütünlügünün korunmasi, suçlarin önlenmesi, suçlularin cezalandirilmasi, Devlet sirri olarak usulünce belirtilmi§ bilgilerin açiklanmamasi, ba§kalarinin §öhret veya haklarinin, özel ve aile hayatlarinin yahut kanunun öngördügü meslek sirlarinin korunmasi veya yargilama görevinin geregine uygun olarak yerine getirilmesi amaçlariyla sinirlanabilir. "32
This section is similar to the section 5 of the German constitution and elucidates that every human being has the right to express his opinions and convictions in word, writing, picture or on any other way alone or collectively. The use of these freedoms can be limited for the protection of the national security, public order, public security ... and the bases of the republic.33
Section 301 (previous section 159) Turkish criminal code: "To the criminal proceedings because of critical statements”
Türk Milletini, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Devletini, Devletin kurum ve organlarini a§agilama ile yargilananlar cezalandirilir.
1) Türk Milletini, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Devletini, Türkiye Büyük Millet Meclisini, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Hükümetini ve Devletin yargi organlarini alenen açagilayan ki§i, alti aydan iki yila kadar hapis cezasi ile cezalandmlir.
2) Devletin askeri veya emniyet teçkilatini alenen açagilayan ki§i 1. fikra hükmüne göre cezalandmlir.
3) Eleçtiri amaciyla yapilan düçünce açiklamalari suç olu§turmaz.
4) Bu suçtan dolayi soruçturma yapilmasi, Adalet Bakaninin iznine baglidir34
This section mentions that anyone who tries to despise Turkey, the republic, state institutions and state organs insults of the Turkish nation, the state of the Turkish republic and the institutions and organs of the state will be punished for that.
1) Every person who disparages the Turkish nation, the Turkish republic, the great National Assembly of Turkey which denigrates the government of the republic Turkey or the justice organs of the state is punished with custody between six months and two years.
2) Every person who denigrates facilities of the military or the police publicly is punished with custody between six months and two years.
3) The expressions of opinion which serve the criticism are not to be evaluated as a criminal offence.
4) The implementation of preliminary proceedings because of a criminal offence is dependent on the authorization of the Minister of Justice.35
With the status of a country which runs for a post in the EU, Turkey was made to improve the juridical basic conditions regarding to the press. The conditions have developed to a positive way: Prison sentences were substituted for fines, the ban of publications was cancelled and the rights of the journalists to keep their sources of information secret were strengthened. Nevertheless, the conditions still explain additional restrictions. The fines are extremely high and the terms of employment of the journalists find no use in the law.36 In the international freedom of the press ranking Turkey booked the 154th place of a total of 179 countries in January, 2013.37
1 Cf. Hare, I./Weinstein, J.: Extreme speech and democracy, New York, 2010, p.142
2 Cf. n.a.: Pressefreiheit Wissen, http://www.pressefreiheit-wissen.de/, Access: April 10th, 2013, 2013
3 Cf. Schmidt, M.G.: Der deutsche Sozialstaat, 2nd Edition, München, 2012
4 Cf. n.a. : Deutschland, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Deutschland.html, Access: April 1st, 2013
5 Cf. n.a.: Deutschland, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Deutschland.html, Access: April 1st, 2013
6 Cf. n.a.: Deutschland, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Deutschland.html, Access: April 1st, 2013
7 Cf. n.a.: Deutschland, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Deutschland.html, Access: April 1st, 2013
8 Steinbach, U.: Die Türkei im 20.Jahrhundert, Köln, 1996, pp.14-18
9 Cf. n.a. : Türkei, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Tuerkei.html, Access: April 1st, 2013, 2012
10 Sonnenhol, G.A.: Die Türkei - Land zwischen zwei Welten, Band 8 der Schriftreihe des Zentrum für Türkeistudien, Opladen, 1990
11 Cf. n.a.: Türkei, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Tuerkei.html, Access: April 1st, 2013, 2012
12 Cf. n.a.: Türkei, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Tuerkei.html, Access: April 1st, 2013, 2012
13 Cf. n.a.: Türkei, http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Aussenpolitik/Laender/Laenderinfos/01- Laender/Tuerkei.html, Access: April 1st, 2013, 2012
14 Cf. Watson, J./Hill, A.: Dictionary of Media and Communications Studies, 8th Edition, Bloomsbury, London, 2012, p.107
15 Danesi, M.: Dictionary of Media and Communications, New York, 2009, p.128
16 Cf. Oxford Universitiy: Oxford Collocation Dictionary for students of English, New York, 2009, p.328
17 Oxford Universitiy: Oxford Dictionary of English, 3rd Edition, New York, 2010, p.696
18 Cf. Gabler Wirschaftslexikon: Das Wissen der Experten, Springer/Gabler, http://wirtschaftslexikon.gabler.de/Definition/presse.html, 2013
19 Oxford Universitiy: Oxford Collocation Dictionary for students of English, New York, 2009, p.529
20 Schmid, M: Die Pressefreiheit nach dem GG, Augsburg, 1992, p.152
21 Grundgesetz Art.5 Abs.1 (German constitution)
22 Grundgesetz Art.5 Abs.2 (German constitution)
23 Cf. Grundgesetz Art.5 Abs.1 (German constitution)
24 Cf. Grundgesetz Art.5 Abs.2 (German constitution)
25 Cf. Groebel, J.: Medien: ein facettenreiches System, http://www.tatsachen-ueber- deutschland.de/de/kultur-medien/main-content-09/medien.html, Access: April 1st, 2013,2012
26 Cf. Meyn, H.: Massenmedien in Deutschland, Konstanz , 2004
27 Cf. n.a. : Rangliste der Pressefreiheit 2011: Die Plätze, http://www.reporter-ohne- grenzen.de/ranglisten/rangliste-2013/, Access: April 1st, 2013
28 Cf. n.a. : Neuer ROG-Bericht zur Lage der Pressefreiheit in der Türkei: Ein presse-feindliches Rechtssystem bedroht kritische Medien und Journalisten, http://www.reporter-ohne- grenzen.de/pressearchiv/laender-und-themenberichte/archiv-untersuchungsbericht- single/artikel/neuer-rog-bericht-zur-lage-der-pressefreiheit-in-der-tuerkei-ein-pressefeindliches- rechtssystem-bedr/, Access: April 1st, 2013, 2011
29 Cf. Sümer, B. : Das Mediensystem der Türkei, in: Hans-Bredow-Institut (Hrsg.): Internationales Handbuch Medien, 28.Aufl., Baden-Baden, 2009, pp. 672
30 Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasasi, Basin hürriyeti, Madde 28 (Turkish constitution)
31 Cf. Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasasi, Basin hürriyeti, Madde 28 (Turkish constitution)
32 Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasasi, Basin hürriyeti, Madde 26 (Turkish constitution)
33 Cf. Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasasi, Basin hürriyeti, Madde 26 (Turkish constitution)
34 Türk Ceza Kanunu, Madde 301 (Turkish criminal code)
35 Cf. Türk Ceza Kanunu, Madde 301 (Turkish criminal code)
36 Cf. Sümer, B. (2009): Das Mediensystem der Türkei, in: Hans-Bredow-Institut (Hrsg.): Internationales Handbuch Medien, 28.Aufl., Baden-Baden, p. 672 f.
37 Cf. n.a. (2011): Rangliste der Pressefreiheit 2011: Die Plätze, http://www.reporter-ohne- grenzen.de/ranglisten/rangliste-2013/, Access: April 1st, 2013
- Quote paper
- Michael Müller (Author), 2013, The freedom of the press in Germany and in Turkey. An analysis of the circumstances in 2013 and a comparison, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/350965