Turkish pro-gov't journalist advertises gun company, poses with rifle

A Turkish pro-government journalist has advertised a gun company and posed with a rifle. Media ombudsman Faruk Bildirici criticized Hakan Çelik for doing so, saying that journalists can't be associated with weapons.

Duvar English 

Turkish pro-government journalist Hakan Çelik has drawn ire for advertising a gun company and posing with a rifle. 

Çelik carried out an interview with Latif Aral Aliş, the CEO of the Sarsılmaz firearm company, for the daily Posta in the firm's production plant in Düzce, in a move that media ombudsman Faruk Bildirici branded "a publicity attempt rather than journalistic work." 

Bildirici pointed to the fact that Çelik didn't question Aliş's claims on the company being "perfect" and that the journalist simply listened as if all of what the CEO said was true. 

Noting that Çelik has been reporting on the defense industry for years, Bildirici said that he didn't use his expertise on the issue during the interview. 

"One can expect from Çelik to know the defense industry, problems with firearm brands and a company's level. However, the questions he asked to Aliş don't reflect such a knowledge," the media ombudsman said. 

"Hakan Çelik seems to have violated the basic journalistic rule of 'contact and distance.' It seems that he is too engaged with the companies within the defense industry," he added. 

Another ethical problem with Çelik's interview is his picture with a rifle, Bildirici said, adding that journalism is a profession of peace. 

"A journalist can't be associated with guns, which is a tool to kill people," he said.