Saturday, April 29, 2006

Reporters on the Job

21 April , 2006

Tuning In: When violence broke out in southeastern Turkey earlier this month, Yigal Schleifer went down to check out the scene. His main quest was to figure out why young Kurds were joining the outlawed PKK party, whose guerrillas were clashing with Turkish security forces. But every time he tried to interview people, all they seemed to want to talk about was Roj TV (see story).

"Every time I reported on the violence and the protests, Roj came up. It got people animated - more so than the protests," says Yigal. When he was interviewing a mother whose guerrilla son had recently been killed by Turkish forces, he asked her how she'd found out about her son's death. "On Roj TV," she replied - as if that was the most natural thing.

From his conversations, Yigal also learned how Roj gave Turkey's Kurds a sense of what was going on with Kurds in other countries - Iran, Iraq, and Syria. "Some of these programs on Roj give a pan-Kurdish perspective which people seem to appreciate, but you can imagine how threatening that might be for the countries where this is seen," he notes.

David Clark Scott
World editor

Source : Christian Science Monitor

Harassments, detention and arrests are increasing

Late, this afternoon the mayor of Shemrex district Nuran Atli ,was interrogated for signing a letter , supporting ROJ TV together with other mayors.

Atli in her answer, stated that closing down of ROJ TV will not be useful in no way for finding a solution to the Kurdish question.

After interrogating several DTP mayors for sending a letter to Danish Prime minister Anders Fogh Rassmusen , this time the mayors of Shemzinan, Esendere , Gimgim and Bazid were summoned for interrogation. They as their other colleague stated they have reflected the wishes of their electorates and they stand behind their position.

They pointed out the closing down of ROJ TV , will be a disservice to the solution of Kurdish question. They reiterated the fact that the majority of the population of their constituencies tune to the ROJ TV. They moreover demanded ROJ TV be allowed to broadcast in Turkey.

Source : ROJ TV News Centre

Wednesday 26 April,2006

Friday, April 28, 2006

The pressures on mayors are mounting

The 56 mayors of DTP who in support of ROJ TV have petitioned the Danish government are facing the harassments of state authorities.

After the interrogation of the mayors of Misirce, Gever, Nis êbin , Hezekh , Bêshebab and Piran , the mayor of Erxeni was interrogated yesterday

The mayor of Erxeni Nadir Bingol , because of his support to ROJ TV was interrogated by Public Prosecutor Office in Erxeni.

He left his answers in writing, he pointed out later , he and his colleagues as DTP affiliated mayors , have conveyed the letter as a reflection of the desire of their electorates , and they stand behind what is said in the letter.

The 56 DTP mayors , in december 27, 2005 on behalf of millions of their electorates had sent a letter of support and solidarity with ROJ TV to Danish Prime minister.

In the meantime the deputy mayor of Wêranshar Naif Aslan was fined, due to the appearance of his pictures in ROJ TV during the Newroz celebrations in the area.

He protested against this verdict and described that as an anti-democratic act.

Source : ROJ TV News Centre


Interrogation and harassments of DTP ( Democratic Society Party) mayors

Interrogation and harassments against 56 DTP mayors , whom in connection to the unjust campaign against ROJ TV had sent a letter to the Danish prime minister is continuing.

After interrogating the mayor of Misirci , The prosecuting office have interrogated the mayors of Gever, Nus êbin, Hezekh, and Piran.

The mayor in Gever Salih Yildiz , today reported to the prosecutor office and was interrogated in connection to the signing of a letter in support of ROJ TV . Yildiz reitrated his position and stated that , millions of people are watching ROJ TV and its closure does not do any good for Turkey.

The mayor of Hezekh Resul Sadak and the mayor of Bêshebab Faik Dursun were summoned to the to prosecuting office in Shirnax for the same reason . After interrogation , the mayor of Hezekh Resul Sadak pointed out : In Kurdistan and in the Middle East millions of people watch ROJ TV , Its closure will be a disservice to the freedom of press and democratic culture.

The mayor of Bêshubab Faik Dursun for his part indicated, they stand behind their signatures and added , %99 of our electorates are watching ROJ TV .

The mayors conveyed the message that whatever their electorates desire , they should try to implement.

The mayor of Nusêbin Mehmet Tanhan and Abdullah Akengin the mayor of Piran gave similar answers to the interrogators.

The other day the Mayor of Misirce had answered the questions of the Prosecuting office.

Source : ROJ TV News Centre


Thursday, April 27, 2006


Monday, April 24, 2006


By : Mizgîn

"This is one time when television fails to capture the true excitement of a large squirrel predicting the weather." ~ Bill Murray as Phil, Groundhog Day.

Sometimes, news reports sound so old, and you hear them so many times, that they become boring. Really boring. It's kind of like reading the same news over and over again, every single day.

What are we reading for the umpteenth time today, you ask? Well, an article in The New Anatolian about Roj TV. It's boring because it's the same thing, with the same air, a blend of the same self-righteous self-assurance and the same vague proofs, and, in general, all the same nonsense that every Turkish article about Roj TV has had for one full year. It was, after all, last April, that the Turkish government began its campaign against Roj.

Just like happened last year, the Turkish government has sent a DVD with Roj TV footage--that The New Anatolian positively guarantees us, will sound the death knell for Roj TV--to the Danish government, notwithstanding the fact that the Turkish media sounded the same death knell prematurely last April, and during the November frenzy. The Turkish media always accompany such statements with the phrase, "it [Roj TV] has proven links with the PKK," which always makes me wonder, if the links are so totally proven, why did nothing happen last April? Why did nothing happen last November? Obviously, the links are not quite as proven as the liars at The New Anatolian, and every other Turkish media outlet for that matter, would have everyone believe.

So what is the alleged proof this time? Take a look:

A DVD was included also in the file sent to Copenhagen to prove that Roj-TV is supporting and inciting PKK activities in Turkey. Images of news reports calling on Kurdish people living in Turkey to "close shops" and "boycott schools" took up the bulk of the DVD. In the same news reports, Roj-TV also showed the names and photos of PKK militants who were killed during clashes between the PKK and Turkish security forces in demonstrations in Turkish cities, along with a call to the audience to take part in the "funeral ceremonies of these heroes."

[. . . ]

Another DVD containing messages from Murat Karayilan, an influential figure in the terrorist organization, was also sent to Copenhagen as part of the evidence of links between Roj-TV and the PKK.

What, exactly, are "PKK activities" that the Turkish government is so uptight about? Calling for a general strike, like closing shops and not going to school--because that's what "the bulk of the video" contained. In other words, civil disobedience is a PKK activity. PKK activity is also defined by the Turkish state as showing the names and photos the civilian demonstrators that the Turkish security forces murdered. Everywhere else in the world, this type of reporting is called "NEWS."

The messages from Murat Karayilan are news, and I guarantee you, that if Murat Karayilan had said anything to incite violence--as in what the definition of "incitement to violence" means in the normal world, and not what it means in Turkey, because anything a Kurd does or says in Turkey can be, and usually is, interpreted by the state as "inciting violence" (or, my personal favorite: "inciting hatred")--the government would have passed out courtesy copies of the transcripts of Karayilan's words to every single journalist in Turkey. And they probably would have arrested any journalist for "inciting violence" if they didn't accept such transcripts.

Not only that, the Turkish government would have overwhelmed the Internet by repeatedly spamming the verbatim transcripts to every single news organization and journalist on the planet.

In the meantime, airing messages from Murat Karayilan proves Roj TV's connection to PKK in the same way that printing messages from Bin Laden proves the Washington Post's connection to al-Qaeda.

Airing messages from Murat Karayilan or Bin Laden is not quite the same thing as your foreign ministry actually inviting the head of a terrorist organization to visit you in your capital city. . . Is it?

The New Anatolian pulls out another dead horse, in order to beat it again, and the horse has a name: Abdullah Hicab. The charge was made by the Turkish government last year and still has no merit. The problem with Abdullah Hicab is that he's a Kurdish writer who supports any Kurdish political party that is working for the rights of Kurds, according to his own statement from last November. But I did mention at the beginning that all this was boring, because all the same stuff is being replayed over and over again, sort of a Kurdish version of Groundhog Day.

Finally, reference is made, yet again, to Med TV and Medya TV, which were shut down by the British and the French, respectively. The British shut down Med TV because of irate callers after Ocalan's capture, not because of ties to PKK, proven or otherwise. Besides, it looked so bad for Turkey that Med was broadcasting NEWS about the Turkish invasion of South Kurdistan, among other things.

Medya TV was closed by the French government just before the anniversary of Ocalan's capture. Coincidentally, it was right before Turkish elections as well. Even more coincidentally, the closure happened a few months before Chirac paid a visit to Ankara, in order to facilitate business between France and Turkey.

It would appear that Medya TV was, in fact, a victim of the legendary French fighting spirit.

Not content with terrorizing Kurds under its occupation, not content with arresting Kurdish political leaders, not content with maintaining almost 300,000 troops in "The Region," the Turkish government must also be ever vigilant to stamp out every Kurdish voice in Diaspora lest, naturally, the truth be told. This falls under item 6 on our list of characteristics of a fascist state.

The truth is the only thing that can shatter the facade of democracy that is the Turkish Republic, and that is why it insists that Roj TV be silenced.

Source :

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Judge for Yourself

The Public opinion and policy makers in Europe and United states are exposed constantly to the slanderous and unfounded accusation of ROJ TV by Turkish mainstream press and television outlets. ROJ TV broadcasts free from repressive media regulations in Turkey , with total compliance to universal code of conduct for media .

The organisations claiming to defend the freedom of expression and the right of

journalists to professionally conduct their duty in imparting information, Such as World Federation of Journalists , Article 19 and Reporters without Borders in the case of ROJ TV ,and the unjust campaign against it have remained silent.

According to which moral and international code of press ethics and broadcasting

regulations Turkish press and mainstream media constantly spread hatred against Kurdish people in Turkey and label them as terrorists ? what sort of principle justifies this silence from the part of aforementioned organisations ?

ROJ TV broadcasts 18 hours programming daily , there is no word or footage found in those broadcasting to be negative vis-a-vis the Turkish culture or the Turkish people, just check the way the opposite does concerning kurds, in their covering of Kurdish issue . The following two items are just examples among extensive slandering and baseless accusations against ROJ TV

Save ROJ TV Team


Roj TV Invites to Provocation

NATIONAL 04.24.2006 Monday - ISTANBUL 16:33

Roj TV Invites to Provocation
By Adana, Murat Gezer
Published: Saturday, April 22, 2006

Terror organization Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) announced the burial places of terrorists that died in clashes with Turkish security forces.

HPG, the armed wing of PKK, indicating 12 terrorists killed on Mount Cudi and Besta region were buried in mass graves, urged the families to ask for the bodies to be unearthed.

Also Roj TV, the broadcasting channel of PKK that is held responsible for events in Diyarbakir and Hakkari, announced the locations where the bodies of terrorists were buried and asked for the corpses to be claimed by family and friends.

Zeynep Gurcanli - The New Anatolian / Ankara

Denmark gets file on Roj-TV, PKK links

Zeynep Gurcanli - The New Anatolian / Ankara

Ankara sent a file to Denmark earlier this month detailing the links between Roj-TV, a station broadcasting under license of the Danish government, and terrorist group the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

The New Anatolian has seen the evidence that Turkish Justice Minister Cemil Cicek said has been sent to the Danish government with a request to shut the station down. Cicek, in a statement last week, read out a file containing recent information sent to the Danish Foreign Ministry.

Some examples of broadcasts of the station between Feb. 28 and April 2 of this year - a time of protests and unrests in Turkey's southeast - were included in the file sent to Copenhagen. A European Union document related to the closure of one of Roj-TV's forerunners, Medya TV, was also included in the file.

Roj-TV has been a bone of contention since Turkey asked Danish officials to shut the station down on the grounds that it had proven links with the PKK. Late last year, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan refused to take part in a news conference with his Danish counterpart Anders Fogh Rasmussen in Copenhagen to protest the presence of Roj-TV journalists there.

Pro-Kurdish Roj-TV, which broadcasts from Denmark, came onto the Turkish political radar through a sudden rise in terrorist PKK activities in the southeast early last year. Ankara, after closely monitoring the station's broadcasts, drew the conclusion that Roj-TV is affiliated to the PKK.

France banned similar channel

The EU document included in the file sent to Copenhagen was an analysis from France's Conseil Superieure de L'audivisuel (Supreme Audiovisual Council or CSA), which is responsible for monitoring TV broadcasts in the country.

CSA notified its sister institutions in other European countries about the February 2004 French government decision to ban Medya TV and explained the reasons. In the document, the French government underlined that the PKK had been banned by France with a decree dated Dec. 2, 1993. The European Union also put the PKK onto its list of terrorist organizations on May 2, 2002. The document also mentioned the "realities" about the links between Med TV and the PKK, citing the potential "risk to French public order" posed by the station.

The British government's similar decision about Med TV, broadcast from the United Kingdom and shut down due to the evidence of its links with the PKK, was also appended to the French document. Med TV was the forerunner of Medya TV, which was established and began its broadcasts from France just after the British government's decision to shut down Med TV.
Turkey, in the file sent to the attention of the Danish authorities, pointed to similarities between the cases of Medya TV and Roj-TV through both French and Turkish official documents. Demonstrating that another EU country hadn't fallen back on "freedom of expression" when faced by an imminent danger of terrorism, Ankara then asked the Danish government to act like its neighbor France.

Broadcasts inciting unrest

A DVD was included also in the file sent to Copenhagen to prove that Roj-TV is supporting and inciting PKK activities in Turkey. Images of news reports calling on Kurdish people living in Turkey to "close shops" and "boycott schools" took up the bulk of the DVD. In the same news reports, Roj-TV also showed the names and photos of PKK militants who were killed during clashes between the PKK and Turkish security forces in demonstrations in Turkish cities, along with a call to the audience to take part in the "funeral ceremonies of these heroes."

Such funerals in recent weeks became the spark for riots and
violence in the southeast.

Another DVD containing messages from Murat Karayilan, an influential figure in the terrorist organization, was also sent to Copenhagen as part of the evidence of links between Roj-TV and the PKK.

In another document within the file, the Turkish government argues that Roj-TV was founded and led by PKK militants. This is proven by the broadcasts of Roj-TV itself, which show how a person wore two hats, both in Roj-TV and the PKK, says the file. The two "job titles" of Abdullah Hicab, both a PKK leader and a member of Roj-TV's administrative board, were both televised as subtitles during a broadcast by the station.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Denmark, again? Now it's under fire for hosting Kurdish TV station.

"Roj TV reflects the emotions of the Kurds, our opinions. It's a mirror of the Kurds," says the mother of 10 as she watches the station's 7 p.m. news broadcast.

It's the third time a Kurdish satellite station has tried to beam news into Turkey, whose laws restrict Kurdish programming within the country. The first two were shut down. Now the Turkish government is lobbying Denmark to rein in Roj, accusing the two-year-old station of being nothing more than a mouthpiece for Kurdish terrorists.

"We know for sure that Roj TV is part of the PKK, a terrorist organization," says a Turkish foreign ministry official, referring to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which battled Turkish troops during the 1980s and '90s in a bloody separatist fight that took the lives of more than 30,000. "[The PKK] is listed as a terrorist organization by the EU. Denmark is a member of the EU, and we would expect that the broadcasting organization of a terrorist group would not be given a free pass."

Asked for evidence of this link, the foreign ministry official says only that Roj had released the names of slain PKK guerrillas before the Turkish authorities had released their identities, implying the station must have a direct connection with the PKK. Turkey has also accused Roj of helping incite a three-day outbreak of violent protests in the southeast earlier this month, and says it has provided the Danish government with documentation to prove the station's link to the PKK.

Denmark, meanwhile, finds itself wrapped up in yet another sticky freedom-of-the-press debate. Although nothing compared to what took place during the furor over the prophet Muhammad cartoons first printed by a Danish newspaper, Denmark's embassy in Ankara - Turkey's capital city - has been receiving a steady stream of angry letters and e-mails from Turks incensed by the country's hosting of Roj TV.

The issue even sparked a mini crisis in Copenhagen last fall, when Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan boycotted a press conference with his Danish counterpart, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, because a reporter from Roj was in the room.

"Surely [the Roj TV affair] is not something that helps to improve relations," admits Anders Christian Hoppe, Denmark's ambassador to Turkey. But Mr. Hoppe declined to comment on whether Denmark was taking any steps to investigate or shut down the station.

"The [Danish] government's position is that, just like in Turkey, this is a matter for the courts. Governments in Western countries, including Turkey, do not interfere with the courts," the ambassador adds.

"It is being investigated by the police, the government. We have been given material by the Turks and it has been very helpful." The first Kurdish satellite channel, Med TV, was licensed in Britain. But the British closed it in 1999, saying it had incited violence. The second attempt, Medya TV, was licensed by France and closed in 2004 because it was deemed to be the successor of Med TV.

Roj appears to be treading more cautiously than Med TV and Medya TV, mindful that they were shut down. But it's clear they have open access to the PKK, whose fighters and leadership are holed up in the mountains of northern Iraq. The station frequently airs footage provided by the organization of its guerrillas in action against Turkish security forces. Its news programs also feature frequent updates about imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, a reviled figure for many Turks.

Manouchehr Tahsili Zonoozi, a Kurd from Iran who is the station's general manager, acknowledges that the station maintains contact with the PKK, but says it is not controlled by it.

"We are an independent Kurdish broadcaster. Our job is to be journalists," he says, speaking by telephone from the station's studios in Denmark.

Mr. Zonoozi also rejects the Turkish claim that Roj helped incite the recent violent protests in Turkey.

"If I am going to be [blamed] for what happened in Istanbul or Diyarbakir, then you should [blame] Le Figaro for [the recent riots that] happened in France. I'm sorry, but that is rubbish," Zonoozi says.

"We are very popular, and that's hard for the governments in the region."

Until the recent introduction of reforms that are part of Turkey's push to join the European Union, local stations in the country were forbidden from broadcasting programs in Kurdish. But limits remain. Stations are only allowed to broadcast in Kurdish for four hours a week, cannot air children's programs, and must avoid "political" subjects - though it's up to managers to interpret what that means.

Deniz Gorduk, news manager of Gun TV, a local Diyarbakir station, says Roj - which, among its various programs, shows children's cartoons in Kurdish - fills a vacuum created by the Turkish government's controls.

"There are so many limits on us and that is why Roj TV is so popular," he says.

In the increasingly restive southeast of Turkey, where satellite dishes now adorn even the humblest village homes, the Turkish government's efforts to shut down Roj TV are now being added to the list of grievances. In January, more than 50 mayors from the region sent a letter to Denmark asking it to keep the station on the air.

"When Roj TV started, it was like a sun rising," says Ali, a tailor who asks that only his first name be used. "We only have Roj TV and now Turkey wants to shut it down."

Source : Christian Science Monitor

WINDOW ON HER WORLD: Kurd Rabia Celikmilek

World > Europe

from the April 21, 2006 edition

WINDOW ON HER WORLD: Kurd Rabia Celikmilek (r., with daughter at home) watches Roj TV. Turkey says it's a terrorist mouthpiece.


Denmark, again? Now it's under fire for hosting Kurdish TV station.

Turkey says the satellite network Roj TV is a mouthpiece for Kurdish terrorists.

By Yigal Schleifer | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor

DIYARBAKIR, TURKEY – From her small apartment in this ancient city, Rabia Celikmilek has access to the entire world. A satellite dish on the roof of her crumbling brick building streams 452 TV channels, with programs from almost every continent.

But Ms. Celikmilek, a Kurd who doesn't speak Turkish, says she only watches Roj TV, a Kurdish channel based in Denmark.

In the Monitor

Friday, 04/21/06

Friday, April 21, 2006

Çiçek: Denmark has sufficient evidence for closure of Roj TV

Thursday, April 20, 2006

ANKARA - TDN Parliament Bureau
Justice Minister Cemil Çiçek has stated clearly that Danish authorities currently have sufficient evidence for the closure of Copenhagen-based Roj TV, which Turkey says provoked deadly street clashes in southeastern Anatolia.

The statement of Çiçek, who is also spokesman for the government, came in apparent response to earlier reports quoting Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen as saying that Denmark expected Turkey to present new evidence to finalize the ongoing police investigation into alleged ties between Roj TV and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

"If Denmark wants to make a decision to close Roj TV, then it has sufficient evidence to do so," Çiçek told reporters.

The minister noted Turkey's request for the closure of Roj TV has been relayed via the Foreign Ministry.

"In continuous contact with our Interior Ministry, they [Foreign Ministry officials] are sending to Danish authorities whatever piece of evidence Turkey has," he said, adding that the Interior Ministry has already handed over to the Foreign Ministry a comprehensive updated file that contains information and documents concerning Roj TV. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gül also has detailed information on the issue.

"In my opinion, the information handed over up until today is sufficient for closure [of Roj TV]. It is extremely obvious. … It is known that it [Roj TV] is very openly lending support to the terror organization; there is nothing to deny about it. It is also known that high-level leaders [of the PKK] broadcast speeches over that channel."

Rasmussen aware of uneasiness of Turkish gov't and media:

Roj TV has been a source of tension between Turkey and Denmark for the last two years. Only late last year Denmark launched an investigation into whether Roj TV has links to the PKK -- classified as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the European Union and the United States -- and refuses to take action until their investigation is complete.

The Danish Radio and Television Board ruled last year that the station's programming could not be considered inflammatory but said it had asked police to look into alleged ties between Roj TV and the PKK.

The Roj TV issue was being handled by a criminal court in Denmark, Foreign Ministry spokesman Namık Tan recently said, noting that Turkey sent all evidence concerning the issue to the office of Denmark's chief prosecutor.

While urging Ankara to provide more evidence, Rasmussen also expressed awareness of the fact that the Turkish government and media blamed him for remaining passive on the Roj TV issue.

"If it can be proved by tangible evidence that Roj TV has provoked terrorist attacks, then needless to say that the channel has committed a crime and will be treated accordingly," he was quoted as saying by CNN-Türk on Tuesday.

Source : Turkish Daily News

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Govt puts more pressure on Denmark over Roj-TV

The New Anatolian / Ankara

Following efforts by the Turkish government to have Danish-based Roj-TV closed, Justice Minister Cemil Cicek said yesterday that there's enough evidence for Denmark to do so.

Steps taken towards the channel's closure are being followed by the Foreign Ministry which forwards any related information from the Interior Ministry to Danish officials.

Roj-TV has been a subject of debate since Turkey requested that Danish officials ban the channel on the grounds that it had proven links with the PKK. Late last year, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan boycotted a news conference with his Danish counterpart Anders Fogh Rasmussen in Copenhagen to protest the presence of Roj-TV journalists there.

Cicek also said that Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul is informed on the issue and a file containing recent information has been sent to the Foreign Ministry.

"In my opinion, according to information collected to date, Roj-TV must be closed. It's very clear. It's known that the channel supports the PKK; there's no doubt about it. Top PKK officials have delivered speeches on the channel," said Cicek, "If Denmark wants to close Roj-TV, there's enough evidence."

Source : The New Anatolian


We are waiting for new evidence about ROJ TV

19 April 2006

Unsal Turan - Koenhagen

Danish prime minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen , in his press conference yesterday answered the questions of Hurriyet. Rassmusen was asked " Are you not aware of the orders to attacks in Turkey being given by ROJ TV, which is sending from Danmark? , he answered : " I am not aware if we could be accused to be very passive on the case of ROJ TV. If in connection to orders for terror attacks any evidence could be established , then it will be dealt with accordingly. I am not aware of any new evidence being presented to us by Turks , we are waiting for these evidences".

Translated from Turkish
Source : Hurriyet on line

Çiçek: There are enough evidence for closing down ROJ TV

Hurriyet 19 April 2006, 18:08

Ankara (A.A.)

The Justice Minister Cemil Çiçek said , "If Denmark wants to decide about closing down ROJ TV there are enough evidence "

Çiçek in, Turkish parliament while answering to the questions of reporters said, The Foreign ministry is working on in connection to the closing down ROJ TV.

He said "Interior ministry is in constant contact with them, they forward any evidence gets to their hands to foreign ministry "On the latest evidence about ROJ TV interior ministry has prepared a file and have handed over it to foreign ministry. He pointed out that the Foreign and deputy prime minister Abdullah Gul posses needed information on the case. "In my view the evidences which so far have been handed in ( to Denmark ) are enough for closing down the station, but it is very clear, it seems there is a very open support given to the terrorist organisation, it can not be denied in any way. The terrorist Organisation's most highly placed leaders are talking at that TV channel, and it is evidently written on the front of the table, there are pictures there as well. It means, if Denmark wants to decide on this case there are enough evidence"

Translated from Turkish
Source: Hurriyet on line

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Dilemma of ''restriction'' in Kurdish broadcasting

AMED (Diyarbekir) (DİHA) -In Turkey where about 542 local, national and regional institutions make limitless broadcasting in Turkish without any hindrance, many restrictions are brought on local televisions which were permitted to air 4 hour in ' local languages and dialects'.

Inspite of claims of authorities as '' the way of Kurdish broadcasting is opened'' about the subject of Kurdish broadcasting, There are bluffs among institutions broadcasting in Turkish and those in other languages. The televisions which took the permission of screening in local languages and dialects in last month, can make airing 4 hour 45 minute in a week. The flow of airing which have to be subtitled should be sent to RTUK( High Councill of Radio and Television) daily, weekly, monthly and annually.

Broadcasting oriented to language education, motion picture, discussions, religious programs, documentaries and advertisements were not included in this restricted right of broadcasting.

Turkish deciphering of the broadcasting should be sent to RTUK for RTUK does not have staff member knowing Kurdish.

Hundreds of national and local TV

The broadcatings in Turkish are not subjected to any restriction except the rules determined by RTUK . While there is no Kurdish TV broadcasting 24 hour in Turkey, the number of national televisions which took licence from RTUK is 24, regional television is 16 and local television 214. Also until now 36 national radio, 101 regional radio and 951 local radios had taken licence from RTUK.

On the other hand while the number of televisions who took permission for broadcasting over satellite is 86, the number of radio is 49. The number of institutions making cablecasting is 65 according to data of RTUK. In Turkey where 542 institutions broadcast in Turkish, Kurdish televisions should settle for 4 hour in a week.

While Kurdish broadcasting faces big hindrances, many televisions including ROJ TV, KTV, KURDSAT, Zagros TV, MMC, Rojhelat TV ,Sahar 2 are broadcasting over satellite for Kurds in Turkey.



Source :

From the Columns

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

(Sabah) Fatih Altayli

A response from Denmark: Sabah daily's Altayli uses his column to forward a response to his readers from Danish Ambassador to Ankara Christian Hoppe, on criticism aimed at his country's permission to give outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK)-linked Kurdish Roj TV to continue their broadcasts. According to Altayli, Hoppe says: "The accusations about Roj TV continue to be scrutinized by the Danish court system, an investigation which is also using many of the documents sent by Turkish bureaus to Denmark. Just as the same situation would be if it were in Turkey, the final decision on the matter will not come from the government, but from the Danish justice system. And, just as in Turkey, in Denmark, the government is not allowed to meddle in the workings of the justice system. In the end, your newspaper's implication that 'the answer coming out of Denmark is negative' is completely wrong. I hope that in the future, your writing on this matter will reflect the truth." In response to this, Hoppe's response, Altayli has his own response: "This answer from Hoppe is funny. We have seen many times how our European friends have tried to intervene and put pressure on Ankara on topics which have been transmitted to the justice system in our own country. When it comes to the independence of the justice system in Turkey, they don't take it seriously. But when it's about Denmark, it's suddenly very serious. No one knows better than Justice Minister Cemil Çiçek what Turkey had to go through before the matter of Roj TV was brought before the Danish courts. Of course, there is a new development. At least the Danish side seems to understand a bit better our sensitivity on this subject." (Vatan)

They have forgotten all about the EU: More rumblings that Ankara seems to have slowed down on the European Union accession process came yesterday in the form of a column from Vatan daily's Okay Gonensin. "The subject at hand is the European Union. And Ankara has forgotten this subject," starts off Gonensin. He goes on to note that the "latest proof of this" is the "1 billion euros extended to Turkey for 'fiscal cooperation efforts' for last year which returned to EU coffers after not having even been touched." Gonensin goes on to warn that even though no official announcements have been made about this yet, in coming days, EU officials will announce that this money has been returned and other project support funds have been frozen, all while "underlining Ankara's lack of activity." So what, asks Gonensin, is Ankara doing? He notes: "Economic problems are continuing, the youth are still out of work, because the world is watching and observing that Turkey has stopped on the road to Europe." Gonensin even ties the recent violent events in the Southeast of Turkey to the slowdown on the EU road: "The EU project includes hope for change on many societal problems, including the Kurdish problem. And the fact that Ankara has forgotten the EU project can now even be seen at the very ends of the country." He touches on the wider meaning of the EU project, saying: "The EU project carried the label of a better future for the entire country. It still does carry this meaning for most of the country. But Ankara doesn't see this, and does not use this 'hope project' in the face of societal problems." Gonensin closes, observing it is better not to even entertain the idea that Ankara might be "deliberately" forgetting the EU project. For, he says, if this is the case, then "we must prepare ourselves to face even heavier problems from here on in." (Hürriyet) Mehmet Yilmaz

Advice for those who want to move ahead: Read 'Rethinking the Kurdish Problem': Yilmaz's column in yesterday's Hürriyet daily: "There are two important subjects that will influence Turkey over the next 20-25 years. The first is completing the EU accession process, and the second is solving the "Kurdish problem." And right now, looking at the way the ruling and opposition party leaders are arguing over these matters in the Turkish Parliament, I am awash in pessimism. If you want, try to remember the various polemic tirades that both Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Deniz Baykal have entered into in previous days: have any of them brought about solutions? Don't even bother trying to recall what these two men have said ... you will find nothing worthwhile. The conversations and arguments on these matters continue among the people of this country, and it is all the same old information, memorized figures and forms. I think we need to start reading and thinking much more about this problem. Mustafa Akyol's new book titled 'Rethinking the Kurdish Problem-What Went Wrong? Where to From Here?' presents a great collection of information about the historical basis of the Kurdish problem. I advise it to anyone who wants to know more about the matter, but doesn't know where to start."

Source ( Sabah)

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Turkey's Kurds face a historic choice

Turkish Daily News

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Turkey's Kurds face a historic choice


.....On another front, it has become apparent that Turkey's efforts to combat broadcasting of Roj TV may not come to a satisfactory result by our efforts alone in urging Denmark to close it. Turkey needs to take the offensive and establish its own Kurdish TV station, broadcast to its own population and beat Roj TV in the hearts and minds of Turkey's Kurds. As a good friend noted recently, if need be, "We need to explain the Turkish Republic and Atatürk in Kurdish." There are certainly risks involved but strong political leadership requires such risks to take. That said, it is saddening to see how the main opposition is trying to make political capital out of such a sensitive and equally critical issue for this country.

The latest comments by the governor of Diyarbakır reveal fresh thinking and need to be explored further. Sabah columnist Erdal Şafak's recent writing also demonstrates sober and constructive views on the problem. Finally, Prime Minister Erdoğan's statements after the events in Diyarbakır offer hope for a new willingness to focus on the problem. The plan to solve the Kurdish issue must be multifaceted. It entails a political plan that will have to address the issue of education in the mother tongue, TV broadcasts and the establishment of a true Kurdish TV station as well as an economic investment plan that has a strong social dimension.....

Monday, April 17, 2006


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

"All of us who professionally use the mass media are the shapers of society. We can vulgerize that society. We can brutalize it. Or we can help lift it onto a higher level." ~ William Bembach.

There is one aspect of the serhildan that I haven't commented on yet, mostly because I have been watching other aspects of it. The one aspect I have not mentioned yet, is that of Roj TV.

Those who follow Kurdish news may remember that, back in November of last year, the Turkish media went into a frenzy over Roj TV and Denmark, who issued a broadcasting license to Roj. And when I use the term "frenzy," I mean exactly that. If you had googled "Roj TV" back then, you would have gotten hundreds of returns referring to Roj TV, and the vast majority of them were from Turkish media. All of these articles had catastrophic, end-of-the-world sounding titles like, "Roj TV to be closed by Denmark in five minutes," or "US to use nukes on Denmark if Roj TV broadcasts continue."

Okay, I'm exaggerating, but the titles did give the impression that the demise of Roj TV was imminent. Of course, all of this media frenzy was manufactured because the Turks had something to hide back in November. At that time, the Turkish government was stepping-up its black operations within Turkish-occupied Kurdistan. The Semdinli affair was the most notorious of these black operations, but there were several other suspicious bombings that took place as well, in the month of November. These bombings resulted in mass protests in Kurdish cities throughout "The Region," and these protests made the Turkish government look bad. Very bad. That simply wouldn't do, what with the EU watching and all, so they manufactured the Roj TV event, in which Erdogan walked out of a press conference with the Danish Prime Minister because a Roj TV reporter was in the audience.

The Turkish game did not work. Denmark stood firm on the right of free expression in general, and the right of free expression for Kurds in particular.

The Google search engine, or any other search engine for that matter, went dead on the subject of Roj TV. Until the end of March, 2006, that is.

If you google "Roj TV" now, you will find some 9 pages of returns. Again, the vast majority of these are from the Turkish media. Again, it appears that the Turkish government is in a frenzy to close Roj TV and, naturally, they are engaging in this manufacturing frenzy because it kills them that Kurds outside the "territorial integrity" of the Turkish state, enjoy free expression rights. . . just like other human beings. Again, we read similar apocalyptic titles, like "Roj TV can be a dangerous toy for Danish politicians," or "Turkey insists on closure of Roj Tv," or "US also wants Roj TV to be shut down." The funniest titles come from the Journal of Turkish Weekly and Zaman, and I encourage everyone to do a Google search for "Roj TV" just to check out the hilarious titles from those two rag sheets.

No less paranoiac, but far more dangerous for its subtelty, is a piece titled "Preventing Turkey's Popular Slide away from the West," by Soner Cagaptay. Here is the so-called Voice of Reason, which is a nice way of saying that this is the fascist fist in the velvet glove. Soner Cagaptay is a Washington DC reptile posing as a Republican. The Turkish version of Michael Rubin, if you will.

Cagaptay remarks how Turkey has been "a traditional bastion of Western policies in the Middle East," which is innocent-sounding enough on the surface. That is, unless you are familiar with Gladio and CIA/MIT psychological operations against Kurds since Turkey became a member of NATO. From this perspective, Cagaptay's remarks take on a much darker color.

In other words, Turkey has been an active player in maintaining the status quo of brutal Middle Eastern social structures. Worse, Turkey has been an active creator of such structures. Cagaptay is admitting that Turkey has been an enthusiastic supporter of Kurdish genocide, and that this genocide dovetails perfectly with the strategic aims of the West. If you read carefully enough, you will clearly see that Soner Cagaptay also admits that it is the desire of the Turkish people to maintain this genocidal status quo, and all this in the first paragraph alone.

Cagaptay then turns his attention to the EU. He says that while it will take a minimum of ten years for Turkey to be ready for full EU membership--and not even that is guaranteed--he sees this as problematic, especially since other countries have spent less time preparing for EU membership while Turkey has been passed over. And, like the good Pashas' boy that he is, blames it all on PKK. He never mentions the fact that Turkey has been an associate member of the EU since 1963, when it became an associate member of the old European Community. The bottom line is that Turkey has had 43 years to prepare itself to become a full member of the EU, and it continues to be put off because it is not a democracy. In fact, it hasn't a clue as to what "democracy" means.

Turkey is still being forced by the EU to become a civilized state and it still balks at doing so. Much of the reluctance of allowing Turkey to become a full member has to do with its horrifying human rights record, a record consisting of atrocity after atrocity, perpetrated mainly against its Kurdish population.

It is a typical tactic of the Kemalist or the Fethullahci, pointing the finger at everyone else, refusing to take responsibility for one's actions while bemoaning one's own perpetual victimhood. All with the Voice of Reason. This is Washington, after all, and they simply don't do histrionics inside the Beltway.

Cagaptay claims that neither DTP nor PKK represent the majority view of Kurds in "The Region." This is pure denial by our propagandist. No doubt Cagaptay will love it if DTP is branded "illegal" before 2007 so that it won't be eligible for running in the elections. That way he will be able to point to his article while appropriating for himself the mantle of prophet. Unfortunately, life in LaLa Land has the very bad habit of coming back to hit you in the teeth, Cagaptay. I hope you have dental insurance.

As for the US, Cagaptay begs the US to tell Turkey how "valued" it is. Cagaptay begs the US to take care of PKK. Cagaptay begs the US to handle Turkey's Cyprus problem. Cagaptay begs the US to go to bat for Turkey with the EU. Cagaptay begs the US to realize how Turkey and the US share the same democratic values. In this context, I take it that "democratic values" means a shared experience of covert operations with the goal of genocide. Yeah, I'd love to hear Cagaptay lay that fact of history on the American people. As Senator George McGovern once declared:

"We were involved in assassinations, assassination attempts. We were operating paramilitary operations with mercenary forces hired in other people's countries with no knowledge on the part of our own Congress, our press or the American people. All of these things are alien to a system of constitutional democracy." ( p.2)

That brings us back to Roj TV. According to our Beltway reptile, Roj TV makes Turkey's situation with the EU worse, and the recent violence in "The Region" has been caused by Roj TV. However, Cagaptay fails to mention that Roj TV has been under investigation for one full year for the same old charges, and Danish authorities have found no credibility to previous Turkish claims that Roj has "incited hatred." The Turkish government loves to use that expression, "incitement to hatred." This is what is known as psychological projection on a national scale.

Cagaptay fails to mention that the Turkish government has done nothing to improve the situation of Kurds or that human rights violations against Kurds have been escalating since 2004. I suppose that Cagaptay would prefer that Turkish propaganda be spread among Kurds via RTUK laws, which guarantee "free expression" in Kurdish language, with no more than 45 minutes per day, of pre-recorded, Turkish-language subtitled television programs. But as long as Roj TV continues to broadcast freely, all of RTUK's efforts at propagandizing the Kurdish people will be ignored.

However I have a newsflash for Cagaptay and for everyone else in LaLa Land: RTUK's efforts at propagandizing the Kurdish people will be ignored, with or without Roj TV, because everyone in "The Region" knows that RTUK exists to protect the state from the spread of dangerous ideas--like democracy, free expression and human rights--and in this respect Roj TV is definitely the antithesis of any Turkish broadcasting law.

It would appear that the Danish government is not fooled by Turkish propaganda either.

In light of the renewed offensive against Roj TV, as well as the renewed offensive against the Kurdish people under Turkish occupation, I would like to point out something else that I noticed a while ago. The following organizations have not stood against the Turkish government's attempts to silence Roj TV:




These organizations make all kinds of noble and false statements about how they exist strictly for free expression rights, and how the right of free expression cannot exist under regimes of fear and repression, or how they are engaged in global battles for free expression. They regularly feature journalists and news organizations that are under the gun in just about every patch of real estate that anyone can imagine, but they have not made any statement in support of Roj TV against the Turkish government's propaganda campaign to silence the Kurdish voice. Their silence is a crime against the Kurdish people's basic right of free expression and, by this very silence, these organizations lend support to the Ankara regime.

Therefore, these organizations are enemies of the Kurdish people.

Just as the Turkish government manufactured it's anti-Roj TV media event in order to divert attention from its renewed black operations against Kurds under Turkish occupation, so it is now attempting to manufacture a new media event against Roj TV, to divert attention from its murder of Kurdish demonstrators, Kurdish children, the disappearance of Kurds, the detention of Kurds, the denial of detentions by the government, the harassment and acts of terror against Kurdish politicians, lawyers and human rights workers. It is attempting to divert attention from its use of chemical weapons against Kurdish gerîlas, and the inhumane refusal to allow proper burial to gerîlas. It is attempting to divert attention from the Turkish government's declaration of war against all Kurds.

Once again, I refer everyone to the 14 characteristics of fascism.

Serkeftin, Roj!

Source :