Turkish journalists 'to get gray passports'

Efforts to allow journalists to receive service passports, or gray passports, are in their final stages.

Turkish journalists 'to get gray passports'

World Bulletin / News Desk

Efforts to allow journalists to receive service passports, or gray passports, are in their final stages. According to an initiative by the General Directorate of Press and Information (BYEGM), journalists who travel abroad frequently on business will soon be able to obtain a service passport, which will enable them to travel to several countries without encountering visa challenges.

BYEGM first discussed the initiative with the Security General Directorate, which advised that gray passports can be issued to staff who travel abroad on business for the government, special administration and municipalities, to civil servants working in international organizations to which Turkey is a member and to individuals appointed by the Turkish Aeronautical Association and the Turkish Red Crescent (Kızılay).

The directorate confirmed that there was no need to create a new law to issue gray passports to journalists and advised that it would be enough for the journalist to have been appointed by BYEGM.

The directorate has drafted a list of close to 700 people which includes editors in chief, Ankara representatives, foreign policy correspondents, diplomatic correspondents, correspondents who keep track of the president and prime minister, photojournalists and cameramen, who travel abroad frequently in the line of their work. If the list is approved, the journalists will be able to obtain gray passports, which will be valid for a defined time period. The passports are initially expected to be issued for a period of two years.

BYEGM has invited the directors of passport departments in all 81 provinces and press and human relations managers to a meeting in Antalya on Friday. During the three day meeting, police chiefs and press managers will be informed about the policy. The policy will become effective after the meeting in Antalya.

Last Mod: 06 Ocak 2011, 18:11
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