Court tells Turkey's media watchdog head to tolerate criticism

An Ankara court has told RTÜK chair Ebubekir Şahin that he needs to tolerate criticism since he's a political figure.

Duvar English 

An Ankara court has told Ebubekir Şahin, the head of Turkey's Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK), that he needs to tolerate criticism since he's a political figure. 

Şahin previously sued main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Group Deputy Chair Engin Altay, who slammed the RTÜK chair for issuing penalties against broadcasters that are critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

"You are not in that position to please Erdoğan," Altay said in May last year, prompting Şahin to file a complaint against the politician over "attacking his personal rights."

The RTÜK chair claimed that he was insulted and slandered by Altay and sought 10,000 Turkish Liras as non-pecuniary damages, the daily Birgün reported on July 19. 

Ankara 10th Criminal Court of First Instance, however, rejected the case and said in its justified ruling that Altay's remarks can't be accepted as insults. 

The court noted that Altay made political criticism and that those who are in politics should tolerate even the harshest criticism against them.