February 27, 2016
The Turkish government has shut down an independent Turkish broadcaster on Friday after accusing it of supporting Kurds.
Under the ruling AK party pressure Turkish satellite provider Turksat were told to cease broadcasts of IMC TV as Ankara says it is investigating whether or not the channel supports a Kurds. The general coordinator, Eyup Burc, however, believes this move was purely political and violating freedom of media and expression.
“In Turkey, everything contrary to the official view is tossed into the terrorism bag,” he told Reuters. “This is clearly a political decision. The prosecutor has no legal right to seek our closure based on an allegation.”
The station was previously pulled off the air as the outlet was broadcasting a live interview with two journalists, Can Dundar and Erdem Gul, who had spent 92-days in prison and are pending trial for releasing video footage they say shows the Turkish intelligence service sending arms to Islamic fighters in Syria.
“This was done deliberately, to send a message to the media: that Can Dundar and Erdem Gul may have been released due to the public outcry, but that doesn’t mean the government is retreating from its course,” Burc claimed.
IMC devotes most of its coverage to the ongoing Turkish crackdown on the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a touchy subject for Ankara.
Despite international organizations condemnation, Turkey continues to crack down media and arrest journalists criticizing AK party policies.