Turkey’s media watchdog cancels five broadcasts of Ayşenur Arslan’s TV program

Turkey's media watchdog RTÜK has penalized a news show on the opposition Halk TV station with a five-time broadcast cancellation and a monetary fine over journalist Ayşenur Arslan's remarks calling the Turkish Resistance Organization of Cyprus an organized crime group.

Duvar English 

Turkey's Radio and Television High Council (RTÜK) has issued a monetary fine on TV channel Halk TV and suspended one of its programs for five episodes over comments of journalist Ayşenur Arslan calling the Turkish Resistance Organization of Cyprus an organized crime group.

In the program titled "Medya Mahallesi" ("Media Neighborhood), Arslan said that Halil Falyalı, a mob boss who was murdered last week, was introducing himself as a member of the Turkish Resistance Organization (TMT). She also referred to the TMT as "an illegal, semi-official organization known for assassinations on the island.”

RTÜK member İlhan Taşçı, from the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), on Feb. 16 announced that RTÜK imposed an administrative fine of five percent on Halk TV and canceled five episodes of the relevant program over Arslan's remarks. 

Last week, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), the ultranationalist National Movement Party (MHP), and the Great Unity Party (BBP) separately submitted criminal complaints against Arslan for her comments.

They accused the journalist of “insulting the Turkish nation, the State of the Republic of Turkey, the institutions and organs of the state.”

The three political parties are demanding that Arslan be investigated by the Chief Prosecutor’s Office and punished in accordance with Article 301, which carries a prison sentence of six months to two years.