Prosecutor’s office calls for ban on Gülen-linked media

Prosecutor’s office calls for ban on Gülen-linked media

Mesut Hasan Benli - ANKARA
Prosecutor’s office calls for ban on Gülen-linked media
The Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office has urged the Communications Ministry to hamper all media communications of the government’s ally-turned-foe Fethullah Gülen by withdrawing state means used to facilitate the broadcasts.

The office’s Bureau for Crimes against the Constitutional Order sent the ministry a written request on April 26 to target the broadcasting and publication of TV channels, radio stations, print media outlets and websites owned by the purported “parallel structure,” claiming that the U.S.-based preacher Gülen used these means to convey his messages and violate Turkish laws.

The bureau, which has been leading the investigation against the “parallel structure,” placed an application with the ministry’s Türksat Directorate, the Turkish operator of satellites that help TV channels broadcast widely. 

The bureau stated that the “Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ)” had pretended to be a religious community for years, but in fact was a terrorist organization. Its aim was to “establish a dictatorship – a state within a state - to mandate the actions of the elected government using state organs to topple the elected government,” the statement read.

Sources from the prosecutor’s office said the ministry had yet to respond to the request.

The fight between erstwhile allies the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Gülen began late 2013 after a massive corruption and graft investigation against four ministers led by Istanbul prosecutors went public in December 2013. 

The Gülenists, who have been accused of forming a “parallel structure,” have also been charged with wiretapping hundreds of thousands of state officials through operations by members employed in the judiciary and police.

Since the probe broke, thousands of prosecutors and police officers have been removed from their previous positions, with pro-government prosecutors now probing the activities of the “parallel state.”

Prosecutor’s office calls for ban on Gülen-linked media,