top of page

Books, newspapers and the arts against censorship
Major conference organized by Hyestart in 2018
(excerpts can be listened to hereunder)

Democracy and human rights in Turkey

Violence against journalists, control of information, muzzling of dissident voices, freedom of expression, freedom of the press and freedom of creation seem more than ever in danger in the world.

What is the nature of censorship and self-censorship today? Who threatens information and why? What is the form of censorship in the age of neoliberalism?

To discuss these questions, Hyestart invited speakers from the most prestigious organizations for the defense of freedom of expression to "Les Salons" theater in Geneva: Eugène Schoulgin, vice-president of PEN International and Gérard Tschopp, president of Reporters sans borders (RSF) Switzerland. 

Particular attention was paid to Turkey: this country is the country in the world which most judges freedom of expression. Publishers are prosecuted there more than anywhere else in the world. RSF considers Turkey to be the biggest prison in the world for journalists.

Hyestart also invited to this event prominent figures of resistance against censorship and oppression: the writer Asli Erdogan, imprisoned from August to December 2016 for terrorism, and the publisher Ragip Zarakolu, who with his publishing house Belgian edition, founded in 1977, broke taboos one after the other (genocide of the Armenians, Kurdish question, Kemalism, etc.). He has also made several stays in prison, the last of which from November 2011 to April 2012, also for terrorism. Both now live in exile.

Alain Navarra, president of Hyestart, and journalist Guillaume Perrier (author of "Dans la tête de Recep Tayyip Ergodan" (Solin/Actes Sud) were also among the speakers.. 

The debate was moderated by journalist  Thérèse Obrecht, specialist in Eastern European countries and freedom of expression and former president of RSF Switzerland.

Excerpts from the speeches can be listened to on the left or above. 

In parallel to the conference, an exhibition tracing the saga of the Belgian publishing house against censorship in Turkey was organized by Hyestart and the Geneva groups of Amnesty International at the Maison des Associations in Geneva from April 25 to 29, 2018.

bottom of page