Following a decision last week by Turkey’s media monitoring institution, the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK), the broadcasting of Yol TV, one of the voices of Alevis in Turkey, was halted on Thursday for allegedly insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
RTÜK officials made the decision on Dec. 21 after the TV station refused to be intimidated by a warning statement.
“The broadcasting of our TV channel was stopped at 17:55 [Turkish time]. Last week RTÜK decided to stop the broadcasting of our TV station. Today, our TV channel was removed from the satellite by Türksat [Turkish Satellite Communications Company] and was shut down,” Yol TV said in a statement on Tuesday.
Calling on people to support a campaign on Twitter with the hashtag #YolTVSusturulamaz (YolTVCannotBeSilenced) Yol TV said: “We declare once again: The voice of Alevis can not be silenced, Yol TV can not be silenced.”
RTÜK, which is composed of members in proportion to the distribution of parties in Parliament, is dominated by ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) representatives.
The decision to shut down yet another critical TV station was made based on Law No. 6112 on charges of insulting President Erdoğan and praising terrorist organizations.
Since a failed coup in Turkey on July 15, a total of 195 media outlets have been shut down by decree for alleged ties to terrorism and coup plotting.