Monday, December 12, 2005

The USA Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Mr Matthew J. Bryza

“Section 12: That the freedom of the press is one of the great bulwarks of liberty, and can never be restrained but by despotic governments."
The Virginia Constitutional Convention on June 12, 1776

Zaman Daily Newspaper in its electronic edition on Monday evening 12.12.2005 has published an interview with USA Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Mr Matthew J. Bryza. Although, when Kurdish issues come up in Turkish press one should be highly suspicious about their accuracy, but what the Zaman quotes from Bryza regarding ROJ TV is a remark of direct disservice to the "freedom of the press as the great bulwarks of liberty".

Zaman writes, “when asked if he (Bryza) told Denmark to shut down ROJ TV, Bryza responded that he did not openly tell the authorities to close down ROJ TV. ROJ TV supports PKK and encourages terror, they told Danish officials. The US conveyed its belief that this particular television channel supports terrorism and reached the decision that the PKK is a terrorist organization and Danish posts also perceive them in the same way. Thus, the final and most reasonable step to be taken is to close down this station, Byrza added”.

As mentioned, it is quite possible that Zaman is not accurate in quoting Mr. Bryza, but both ROJ TV and Kurds in general have the right to ask why a television station, which is promoting Kurdish culture and language, should be labelled as such by a highly placed official in US administration.

Section 12 in Bill of Rights from 229 years ago, envisages the freedom of press for American citizens since, now in 2005 if Kurds demand that it should not be trampled under the pretext of fighting terrorism.

ROJ TV does not support terrorism; on the contrary, it exposes atrocities, which are carried out systematically against the Kurdish people.