TRT head threatens to cut Demirtaş’s rallies over criticism
Selahattin Demirtaş criticized the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) over its unequal media coverage of the election campaign during a rally in the western province of Aydın. AA PhotoThe head of Turkey’s state broadcaster has vowed to stop airing Selahattin Demirtaş, the presidential candidate and co-leader of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), if he continues to accuse the channel of one-sided coverage during live broadcasts of his rallies.
Demirtaş criticized the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) over its unequal media coverage of the election campaign during a rally in the western province of Aydın.
TRT head İbrahim Şahin said Demirtaş’s speech was “very unfortunate,” adding that the nation was watching closely those who make excuses centering on the channel since they already see themselves as the losers.
“We will cut broadcasts if these heavy accusations continue to be expressed in live coverage,” he said.
When asked about Şahin’s statement, Demirtaş said on July 28 that he would “deal with him” after Eid al-Fitr.
Demirtaş has filed an official complaint against those who were responsible for the one-sided coverage of the presidential campaign to the advantage of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
Bülent Tezcan, deputy leader of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), also submitted a petition to the Ankara chief prosecutor on the grounds that TRT had violated the principle of impartiality.
The deputy head of the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK), Hasan Tahsin Fendoğlu, has previously dismissed criticisms against TRT for overwhelmingly covering Erdoğan’s rallies compared to the other candidates, arguing that such a thing should be expected because he is the prime minister.
“One of the candidates is only a party head, the other is only a presidential candidate, but [Erdoğan] is a candidate, a prime minister and a party head. He has three characteristics,” Fendoğlu said July 12, arguing that the media was broadcasting “what was worthy of information.”