Turkey’s media watchdog fines six broadcasters

The Turkish Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) has imposed fines on six Turkish broadcasters for violating rules in several programmes, state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Friday.

The media watchdog decided to impose a heavy penalty to FOX TV for the comments of its news anchor Fatih Portakal, who, according to Anadolu, portrayed Turkey as a colonialist country when criticising the government’s eastern Mediterranean policy.

The other five broadcasters are penalised by RTÜK for their programmes on a 6.8-magnitude earthquake that jolted Turkey’s eastern province of Elazığ on Jan. 24.

KRT television channel was fined for journalist Serdar Akinan’s comments during a television programme where he said search and rescue work in Elazığ had been halted due to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s visit to the earthquake-hit province. 

Halk TV, Tele 1, TV 5 and Habertürk will also pay fines for provoking panic among people through their broadcasts following the earthquake, Anadolu said. 

The news wire did not mention the amount of fines to be paid by broadcasters.