The claims made by the state channel TRT head İbrahim Şahin regarding the airtime of the three presidential candidates are misleading and false.
In his latest statement, Mr. Şahin himself revealed that Mr. Demirtaş has been allocated on air television time only as of July 11.
This part of his statement alone gives away that TRT has been violating the ‘equal treatment to all candidates’ protocol as of June 29, the day the candidates were announced.
According to Mr. Şahin’s statement, Mr. Demirtaş has appeared live on TRT network for a total of 224 minutes as of today. The Radio and Television Supreme Council numbers tell the other side of the story: AKP’s candidate has been on air for a total of 7,200 minutes during the same time frame.
The total amount of time allocated to Mr. Demirtaş during the entire campaign equals on average the time AKP’s candidate gets daily on TRT. Mr. Demirtaş, on the other hand, gets an average of 7.4 minutes coverage.
Even the numbers from the last three days reveal the same story: On July 26, AKP’s candidate got total coverage of 100 minutes and 16 seconds on 14 different newscasts of which 67 minutes and 37 seconds were broadcasted live on TRT network.
Mr. Demirtaş, on the other hand, got total coverage of 35 minutes and 2 seconds on 7 different newscasts of which 20 minutes were broadcasted live on the same state channel network. The AKP candidate was broadcasted 3 times the amount of Mr. Demirtaş.
Similarly, on July 25, AKP’s candidate got coverage of 155 minutes and 8 seconds of which 124 minutes and 9 seconds were on live television. Mr. Demirtaş was on air on 3 different newscasts for 4 minutes and 8 seconds of which no were broadcasted live. The AKP candidate was broadcast 39 times the amount of Mr. Demirtaş.
On July 24, AKP’s candidate got coverage of 106 minutes and 6 seconds on 6 newscasts of which 64 minutes were broadcasted live. Mr. Demirtaş was on air on for 4 different newscasts for 19 minutes and 9 seconds of which 15 minutes and 30 seconds were on live television. The AKP candidate was broadcast 5.5 times the amount of Mr. Demirtaş.
As the abovementioned evidence show, and despite the calls of and the three official warnings issued by the Supreme Electoral Council, the unequal and exclusionary broadcast policy of the state channel network TRT continues.
Peoples’ Democratic Party
July 27, 2014