Turkish PM’s attacks to TV series raise eyebrows
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. AA photo
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s heavy criticism Nov. 25 of the hit Turkish TV soap opera “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” (The Magnificent Century) for its portrayal of the Ottoman ruler Süleyman the Magnificent has led to rigorous criticism by members of opposition parties.
Some described Erdoğan’s behavior as an intervention in the judiciary because he had said, “We have alerted the authorities on this, and we wait for judicial decision on it.” Others said the prime minister was mainly trying to divert the country’s agenda.
Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy chair Erdoğan Toprak described Erdoğan’s approach as “grave, authoritarian and unhealthy,” daily Radikal reported Nov. 26.
“The prime minister, who has in the past said he gave orders to the judiciary, is again attempting to give orders to the judiciary. Wasn’t the judiciary independent, Mr. Prime Minister?” Toprak was quoted as saying by Radikal.
According to Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) Secretary-General İsmet Büyükataman, Erdoğan basically wanted to change the agenda since he felt trapped by the heavy agenda of the country.
Tv series and historical facts
“Did it just occur to him now? This TV series has been on the air for more than a year,” Büyükataman told Radikal. “The series should be reviewed in line with historical facts, but I don’t believe in the sincerity of Mr. Prime Minister’s approach.”
Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) deputy parliamentary group chair İdris Balüken said Erdoğan’s main problem was his aspiration to tyrannize over arts and artists, while also intervening in the judiciary as the judiciary itself has already been manipulated by his positions.
“Taking this aspect into consideration, we can estimate the greatness of the danger of an order given to the judiciary for censorship and to take the arts under its control,” Balüken said.