Turkish state-run broadcaster TRT Haber gives CHP’s mayoral candidates mere 0 minutes of coverage on Feb. 12-13

Turkish state television TRT Haber (TRT News) has allocated mere 0 minutes to main opposition CHP’s Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir mayoral candidates, whereas 73 minutes to AKP’s candidates in two days.

Duvar English

Turkey’s public broadcaster TRT’s news channel, TRT Haber (TRT News), on Feb. 12 and 13 allocated mere 0 minutes to Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir mayoral candidates from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), the daily BirGün reported on Feb. 26.

Accordingly, the broadcaster presented 28 news regarding AKP’s Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir mayoral candidates in the same time period.

AKP’s Istanbul candidate Murat Kurum was covered by TRT News with 12 news, Ankara candidate Turgut Altınok and İzmir candidate Hamza Dağ with 8 news each in two days. 

The channel allocated 73 minutes of coverage to three AKP candidates in two days, whereas mere 0 minutes to CHP candidates. 

CHP’s member of the media watchdog Radio and Television High Council (RTÜK), Tuncay Keser, criticized the allocation, saying that the channel turned into a “propaganda tool.”

“TRT ignores a section of the nation. TRT management is committing a crime. On the one hand, TRT is violating its own law, and on the other hand, it is ignoring the decisions of the Supreme Electoral Council (YSK). The YSK does not investigate this at all. RTÜK turns a blind eye to TRT's lawlessness. Electoral justice and freedom of the press are being destroyed with public money,” Keser added.

The local elections are scheduled for March 31, 2024. Istanbul and Ankara mayors of the CHP, Ekrem İmamoğlu and Mansur Yavaş, are re-running for their posts.