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Pressure ramps up on Turkish news media as elections near

Turkey’s independent news stations tell Al-Monitor that heavy fines threaten free and fair representation ahead of upcoming elections. 
ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images

Turkey’s independent news televisions are crashing under heavy fines and penalties by the country’s broadcasting watchdog RTUK. TV executives say RTUK is trying to force them to cave by imposing self-censorship or selling their broadcasting licenses ahead of the upcoming election period. 

The fines came as the Turkish is expected to pass a draft bill criminalizing social media posts deemed as “fake” and amid a mass arrest of the journalists in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, underscoring the fears of increasing pressure on the media ahead of the elections scheduled for June 2023.

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