Turkey's TV watchdog penalizes state broadcaster for insulting joke on Alevis
ANKARA – HürriyetThe Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) has decided to penalize the state owned television channel for broadcasting a joke insulting the Alevi community.
Singer Mustafa Topaloğlu told a joke insulting the Alevi community at a program on TRT Müzik channel. RTÜK members agreed on Jan. 23 to penalize the state-owned channel over the joke. The RTÜK’s decision was sent to Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç for his approval because the TRT is a public institution.
A majority of the RTÜK members from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) also joined the decision to penalize the channel. Only the RTÜK’s head, Davut Dursun, objected to the decision.
The penalty was given on the grounds that the RTÜK Law’s Article 8, “Media service providers shall not incite the society to hatred and hostility by discriminating on the grounds of race, language, religion, sex, class, region and sect and shall not constitute any feelings of hatred in society.”