Western media under fire for biased rhetoric pre-Türkiye polls

Türkiye Materials 5 May 2023 06:11 (UTC +04:00)
Western media under fire for biased rhetoric pre-Türkiye polls

Turkish officials, including Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavushoglu, criticized The Economist and other media outlets for their latest editions, which feature blatantly biased anti-Erdogan cover urging Turkish citizens to vote him out, Trend reports citing Daily Sabah.

Slamming the London-based weekly for deciding on behalf of the Turkish people, Cavushoglu said it is interfering in the domestic affairs of the country.

"Nobody can usurp the will of the Turkish people," Cavushoglu said Thursday.

“They’re saying Erdogan should go, he must go. They’re making decisions on behalf of the Turkish people, or are trying to give advice to them. Why should Erdogan go?” the foreign minister said.

He continued by saying that there would’ve been a global food crisis if it wasn’t for President Erdogan’s efforts to ensure the grain initiative and that it is unacceptable for foreign media outlets to interfere in the domestic affairs of a country.

Cavushoglualso criticized Germany for refusing to authorize Türkiye for setting up polling stations in more areas to meet the soaring demand of voters in the country.

The minister also noted that he has retracted his op-ed for The Economist’s next issue and that the Turkish people would respond to The Economist on May 14, the day of the elections.

The Economist’s latest edition featured a cover with the title “The Most Important Election of 2023” adorned with tags “Save Democracy” and “Erdogan Must Go.”

French Le Point and L'Express magazines also featured anti-Erdogan covers, with the former referring to Erdogan as “the other Putin” while L’Express associated him with the risk of chaos, with subheadings including relations with Europe, the migrants and the Middle East, as well as his discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Both magazines featured photos edited to villanize the president.

Meanwhile, Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun also criticized the Western media outlets for their anti-Erdogan rhetoric.

Criticizing the media outlets for completely disregarding the principle of impartiality, Altun said they are trying to manage perception through their propaganda.

Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag also criticized The Economist’s issue, saying that it is none of the magazine’s business to decide who would win the vote.

“Who will decide on Erdogan’s departure? The Economist? What is it up to them?” Bozdag said.

He continued by criticizing the biased publication, saying that the president has always won through democracy and embraced the will of the people during crises, such as the July 15 failed coup attempt.

He also noted that the Turkish people are also staunch defendants of democracy and did not hesitate to stand up against tanks and bullets on the night of the coup attempt to protect it.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) spokesperson Omer Celik also criticized Western media outlets for anti-Erdogan rhetoric, saying that they have all mobilized to influence the political process in Türkiye.