Author Archives: yavuzbaydar

About yavuzbaydar

Yavuz Baydar has been an award-winning Turkish journalist, whose professional activity spans nearly four decades. In December 2013, Baydar co-founded the independent media platform, P24, Punto24, to monitor the media sector of Turkey, as well as organizing surveys, and training workshops. Baydar wrote opinion columns, in Turkish, liberal daily Ozgur Dusunce and news site Haberdar, and in English, daily Today's Zaman, on domestic and foreign policy issues related to Turkey, and media matters, until all had to cease publications due to growing political oppression. Currently, he writes regular chronicles for Die Süddeutsche Zeitung, and opinion columns for the Arab Weekly, as well as analysis for Index on Censorship. Baydar blogs with the Huffington Post, sharing his his analysis and views on Turkish politics, the Middle East, Balkans, Europe, U.S-Turkish relations, human rights, free speech, press freedom, history, etc. His opinion articles appeared at the New York Times, the Guardian, El Pais, Svenska Dagbladet, and Al Jazeera English online. Turkey’s first news ombudsman, beginning at Milliyet daily in 1999, Baydar worked in the same role as reader representative until 2014. His work included reader complaints with content, and commentary on media ethics. Working in a tough professional climate had its costs: he was twice forced to leave his job, after his self-critical columns on journalistic flaws and fabricated news stories. Baydar worked as producer and news presenter in Swedish Radio &TV Corp. (SR) Stockholm, Sweden between 1979-1991; as correspondent for Scandinavia and Baltics for Turkish daily Cumhuriyet between 1980-1992, and the BBC World Service, in early 1990's. Returning to Turkey in 1994, he worked as reporter and ediytor for various outlets in print, as well as hosting debate porogrammes in public and private TV channels. Baydar studied informatics, cybernetics and, later, had his journalism ediucatiob in the University of Stockholm. Baydar served as president of the U.S. based International Organizaton of News Ombudsmen (ONO) in 2003. He was a Knight-Wallace Fellow at University of Michigan in 2004. Baydar was given the Special Award of the European Press Prize (EPP), for 'excellence in journalism', along with the Guardian and Der Spiegel in 2014. He won the Umbria Journalism Award in March 2014 and Caravella/Mare Nostrum Prize in 2015; both in Italy. Baydar completed an extensive research on self-censorship, corruption in media, and growing threats over journalism in Turkey as a Shorenstein Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.

Turkey’s opposition marches for justice, as its media shakes hands with Erdoğan

”Knife’s hit the bone…” With these words, Turkish opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu started more than a week ago from Ankara his long ‘March for Justice’. 432 km and 20 days later, he hopes to conclude it in front of a … Continue reading

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‘Qatar effect’ on Turkey seems inevitable: ‘Twin brothers in arms’ are in trouble

Soon after the Qatar crisis erupted, worries started mounting in Ankara. Given the message sent by Gulf Arab countries leading efforts to isolate Qatar, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) were concerned that … Continue reading

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Stories of agony ad absurdum: The Judge, the Painter and the News Ombudsman

‘‘My friend Güray Öz – You lived in Germany for many years. You have lived to learn democracy and freedom. In Turkey, one learns about those only by reading the books! In Turkey, a new breed of people emerged; those … Continue reading

Posted in AKP, EU, Media, Turkey | 1 Comment

Turkish academia suffers of collapse as purged academics call for global boycott

The crackdown on the freedom of expression and dissent since the failed coup in July 15 last year has reached epic proportions in Turkey. The effects of the continous severe blows to journalism is by now well known. Another area … Continue reading

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With the main opposition party gaping, Erdoğan launches ‘cultural revolution’

”The constitutional referendum and the authorities’ handling of the campaign that preceded it have reinforced concerns that Turkey is descending ever deeper not only into authoritarianism but into lawlessness. Indeed, the refusal to provide the referendum result with a patina … Continue reading

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Turkey 2017: Professional annihilation, high merits persecuted, careers ending

Wherever he touches ground, Erdoğan makes sure he leaves traces that speak clearly of his unstoppable march towards absolute power. In between his referendum victory and regaining full control over his party, he kept busy touring the world, meeting the … Continue reading

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Has Turkey’s notorious ‘deep state’ come back with a vengeance?

”The return of Ergenekon as ultranationalists replace FETÖ” This was the headline of one of the most concise and interesting analysis I encountered lately. The column was penned by my esteemed colleague Barçın Yinanç, with Hurriyet Daily News (an outlet … Continue reading

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An award that goes to all those who resist darkness of despotism in Turkey

In May 15, I stood at the stage in Hotel President Wilson in Geneva, to receive an award that left me with a great sense of humility and pride. It was the human rights NGO, UN Watch which had decided … Continue reading

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Erdoğan’s ‘Global Legitimacy Tour’ to reach its successful finale in Brussels

President Erdoğan’s march on the road map, very clearly defined by him for long, proceeds with no hurdles. On Sunday, he was re-elected as party chairman after nearly 1000 days of absence, and, after gaining control in most of the … Continue reading

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Live and let die: Are hunger strikes a cynical tool for ‘martyrdom politics’?

”If the power targets the very life, then the life itself becomes, per se, a resistance to power.” This motto often at display in strikes and social resistence in public spaces, has carved itself into memory. In the past week … Continue reading

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