Saturday, November 19, 2005

Police wrap up Kurdish television investigation

11/19/2005 - Danish police are under pressure to conduct a hasty investigation of a Kurdish television station that Turkey claims is financed by a terrorist organisation The Copenhagen Police is wrapping up its investigation of a Kurdish television station in Denmark, which Turkey accuses of being financed by the Kurdistan's Workers' Party (PKK), a separatist movement labelled as a terrorist organisation by the European Union. 'The material that police have collected so far is now subject to legal evaluation, and no one has been charged in the case,' said police advocate Michael Jørgensen from the Copenhagen Police. In October, the police began an investigation of ROJ TV, a Kurdish television station broadcasting news, entertainment, films, children's programs, and debate shows to Kurds in Denmark from its studios in downtown Copenhagen.

ROJ TV says it has no connections with PKK.

Turkey has long criticised Denmark for not banning the station, and on Tuesday, Turkish Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan left his meeting with Danish PM Anders Fogh Rasmussen in a fury, when he discovered that one of the station's reporters was present at a press briefing after their meeting. Erdogan made it clear upon his return to Turkey that he expected Denmark to close down the station. 'As a medium, they support terrorism. It's an organ that promotes terrorism and shelters terrorist activities in my country,' Erdogan said. On Thursday, a spokesman from the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs told reporters in Ankara that Turkey was keeping a close eye on the Danish police's investigation of ROJ TV and expected a fast result. Turkey has succeeded in having a number of Kurdish media closed down in Germany. Rasmussen said he had no choice but to allow the Kurdish reporter to attend the press briefing. 'Today, we have been confronted with a number of things, where I simply cannot compromise,' Rasmussen said. 'These are fundamental principles about how a democracy works.'