Although the Supreme Court ruled that using the word "guerilla" on televisions should be considered in the scope of freedom of expression, the Council of State has decided the opposite. Barış Günaydın, lecturer at Anadolu University Faculty of Communication, Press Law Department, referred to the Article 10 of European Convention on Human Rights in reply to the decision.
"Turkey is a party to the Convention and therefore recognizes the jurisdiction of European Court of Human Rights. The case law must be taken into account while dealing with this case.
"European Court of Human Rights case law says that using the word 'guerilla' is considered as practicing freedom of expression . The case law should be the answer in cases of conflicting verdicts of different courts in Turkey."
"The decision of the Council of State that bans using the word limits the freedom of expression and press. The ruling should also be assessed considering this aspect."
"Broadcasting against national security"
Hatip Dicle, a prisoner of KCK case, and Selim Sadak from Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) had been sentenced to imprisonment for saying "Mr. Öcalan" and "guerilla" on Roj TV; however, the 9th Penal Department of the Supreme Court reversed the decision stating that it should be considered as the right to free expression.
The Council of State, on the other hand, banned televisions to refer to PKK members as 'guerillas'.
According to Aksam newspaper, this decision is taken after a TV program on CNNTURK on Mardin massacre -where 44 people were killed- and the tribal culture in 15 May 2009.
Following the complaints about the TV program, Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) decided that using the word "guerilla" is considered as "broadcasting against national security" and issued a warning to the TV channel.
CNNTURK appealed to the administration court for the cancellation of the penalty. The court annuled the penalty, ruling that , "the word 'guerilla' should be considered in the entirety of the TV program".
However, RTÜK appealed the court's decision in The Council of State, which finalized the case after 3 years, upholding the inital decision of issuing a warning to the TV station. The Council of State said, in his justification:
" The word, in general, 'guerilla' is used to refer to insurgents who are fighting for a legitimate purpose. The use of this word for PKK members would legitimize the terrorists and the terrorism." (EKN)