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.

‘Rogue partner’

”Turkey watchers are used to heated political exchanges both within Turkey and between the country and its international partners. In the past spring and summer, however, all boundaries have been overstepped” wrote Marc Pierini last Monday. Formerly an EU ambassador … Continue reading

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Disillusioned by the education and the future, Turkish students join the exodus

With a big smile, she extended her hand and said ‘Hello, I think I know you, I am a Turkish student, just arrived.” I was at a brief visit for a university in Sweden, and had landed in the midst … Continue reading

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Spain arresting EU citizens persecuted by Turkey on their views is a scandalous act

Only a week or two after the failed coup in Turkey, which took place in July 15, 2017, I was discussing some legal matters which might be of use any of my journalist or academic friends, who either happened to … Continue reading

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Erdoğan’s new task on autocratic path: Full-scale purge inside his party, AKP

Now, this is the moment I was waiting for. When it came to the real challenge – I mean ‘taking the bull by the horns’ – Erdoğan’s most recent stepping in to totally restructure his own party is the one. … Continue reading

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Is Kurdish referendum a ticking bomb?

U.S Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, seems to have failed to persuade Massoud Barzani, the leader of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq, as many unknıwns remain about the outcome of the referendum on independence of Kurdistan. Barzani asked … Continue reading

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Abused, hated, and hunted: ‘Eternal solitude’ of the Turkish intellectual

Against the solid, collective adoration of President Erdoğan, what strikes any observer is the solitude of the intellectual, which is an enforced isolation whether or not inside prison. Taken together, these two phenomenon – victorious masses in denial of democracy … Continue reading

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Why the adoration for Erdoğan among the Turks abroad remain so rock solid?

”Let’s be brutal: democracy is dying. And the most startling thing is how few ordinary people are worried about it” wrote Paul Mason, an expert on social justice, in the Guardian. ”Instead we compartmentalise the problem. Americans worried about the … Continue reading

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Turkish opposition in grand delusion

It is question time now. Everyone who is one way or another is interested, or has interests in, Turkey, keeps pouring out questions, as the crisis under Erdoğan deepens. ”Will there be an end to this?” was a question sent … Continue reading

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Who can challenge Erdoğan, and how?

Now that Turkey from various vantage points display a ‘free fall’ pattern – particularly because of the fall-out with Germany and Saudi Arabia – the key question is what are the capabilities of the opposition at home. Is it, after … Continue reading

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Defining human rights as his enemy, Erdoğan is now at a point of no return

Perhaps it is my fault. I can no longer understand the naivete – some would call it wishful thinking – of the people I know, that no matter how badly the current ruling factions of Turkey under the banner of … Continue reading

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