Turkish media watchdog revokes radio channel's license over Armenian Genocide remarks

Turkish media watchdog RTÜK revoked radio channel Açık Radyo's license over “not complying” with the program suspension fine it received due to remarks on the Armenian Genocide in of its programs.

Duvar English

İlhan Taşcı, a member of the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK), stated on July 3 that the media watchdog has revoked Açık Radyo's license for failing to comply with a 5-day program suspension imposed for "inciting the public to hatred and hostility."

RTÜK fined the radio channel 189,282 Turkish liras and suspended its broadcasts for five days due to statements made about the Armenian Genocide during a program on April 24, 2024. 

The decision cited remarks by a guest stating, "Armenian, that is, the deportation and massacres that took place in Ottoman lands, the 109th anniversary of massacres referred to as genocide. It was banned again this year, you know, Armenian genocide commemoration," and the program host’s “failing to make a correction attempt.”

Taşçı said that the broadcaster had paid the fine but had not suspended broadcasting and added, "This situation should have been interpreted in favor of the broadcaster."

Açık Radyo stated, "At the point we are, it is unacceptable that, on the basis of an expression, which indisputably stands within the scope of freedom of expression and press freedom, voiced during our program 'Açık Gazete', we now face the revocation of Açık Radyo's broadcast license."

The radio station announced that they were making all necessary legal applications and noted, "At (Açık) Radyo, as it has done for the past 30 years, will continue its broadcast with the same responsibility, and in line with the same universal principles of journalism"