Thursday, December 22, 2005

Professor to politicians: Steer clear of ROJ TV

Politiken.Dk, Tuesday 20,December 2005(Translated from Danish )

Professor in Law is criticising the opposition which has started a petition into
defend the TV sation Roj TV "They're interfering in a case which should not be
politicised", he says.
By:Line Jakobsen
Members of parliament are not to interfere in a specific criminal case - theyshould stay away.Such a harsh the statement comes from Henning Koch, Professor in Law from University of Copenhagen.PetitionHe is criticising the four MPs Jeppe Kofod(S), Naser Khader (R), Holger K.Nielsen (SF) and Rune Lund from United List for breaking the principle ofdivision of power.
The four have initiated a petition in the Folketinget in defence of theKurdish tv station Roj TV's freedom of expression.
"The legislature power shall not interfere in whether or not it is right toraise a criminal charge. It is solely the responsibility and competence ofthe executive body. Furthermore, no political considerations should be allowed to enter the picture, when the security of the state is at stake, andsuspisions of terrorism are raised", says Koch.
Turkey rejects criticism.The Kurdish tv station has been reported to the police by the Turkishambassador for having connections to the Kurdish organisation PKK. which alsofeatures on the EU and US' lists of terror organisations.
After having investigated the case of ROJ tv, the police have now passed it over to the Lord Advocate.
According to the four politicians, the support should be given to the cause of"the Governement not giving in to the pressures launched by the Turkish and theUS governements to close ROJ tv, which broadcasts from Denmark".
Reported to the PoliceThe idea of the Turkish government putting pressure on denmark ishowever new tothe Turkish Ambassador to Denmark, Mehmet Akat. He says:
"All we've done is reporting Roj TV to the police. We think they have connections to the PKK, and it's now up to the police to decide what will happen. We have by no means any problem with the freedom of expression . Recently in Turkey, we've realised numerous reforms to further the freedom of expression".
Holger K Nielsen is not agreeing with Henning Koch, nor Mehmet Akat.
"We are not interfering as such. All we're doing is to politically recognise the pressure US and Turkey have launched in order for the Danish government to shut down ROJ TV".