ANKARA (Reuters)–Turkey called on Wednesday for a permanent halt to the broadcasts of a British-based Kurdish television station which it says is the voice of Kurds loyal to captured leader Abdullah Ocalan.
The MED TV television channel–known to have close links to theKurds–is already under a 21-day broadcast ban imposed by a media watchdog since Monday.
The Independent Television Commission (ITC) said earlier this week it had slapped the ban on MED TV for airing live speeches by Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) members calling for violence and was considering permanently canceling its license.
The Turkish foreign ministry–in a statement faxed to Reuters–welcomed the ITC’s decision–but added:
"It would constitute a crucial step in the battle against terrorism if these broadcasts by the terror organization… ceased completely."
Turkey has launched a diplomatic campaign pressuring European countries to put an end to MED-TV.
In response the self-proclaimed Kurdish "parliament-in- exile," deemed by Turkey a front for the PKK–urged the West not to bow to Turkey’s diplomatic pressure.