The legacy of free media
As an alternative to the central media in the Turkish state, free media began on April 22, 1990 and was able to publish more than 50 daily and weekly newspapers in the four parts of Kurdistan. It went on its struggle amid the sourrounding risks without stopping.
In a short period of time, it managed to convoy the resistance and people voice against the authoritarian regimes. It made great sacrifices in 30 years, despite the murders, kidnappings and arrests to uncover and disseminate the facts. .
" Haqiqat el-Sha'ab" magazine ( the truth of the people)
" Şiyariya Civakî " magazine, which means "social awareness",was closed shortly after its publication. On April 22, 1990, Haqiqat el-SHa'ab" published and was considered the first step in the free media.
After closing" Haqiqat el-Sha'ab", its editor-in-chief, Hossein Aykul issued "Gelê Nû" newspaper which means "the new people" and was shut down by the newspaper's management in late 1990. On October 20, 1990, "Yenî Ulke", which means "New Home", its office came under attack in Amed North of Kurdistan ( Turkey ).
OZGÛR GÛNDEM newspaper
"OZGÛR GÛNDEM "means free event. It was published on May 30, 1992 as a continuation for "the New Homeland" from 1992. 90 and continue until 1992. The Turkish occupation state closed it on the 14th of April, 1994, but it worked under different names for many years later.
Since the newspaper publication, 27 people of the newspaper staff: reporters, writers or distributors, were killed on the ground " offender unknown" and many of the magazine's offices were attacked. The newspaper issued 580 editions, 756 lawsuits were pursued against 756 of them and the court sentenced the newspaper's employees to 147 years in prison. The magazine was also banned on the pretext of propaganda for the PKK.
On December 10, 1993, hundreds of Turkish police raided the newspaper building and arrested its employees. After dissolving its management, Okuz Ulke newspaper (Free Homeland) was published on April 28, 1994. On December 4, 1994, three of the newspaper's offices were bombed simultaneously resulting in killing the journalist Arsène Yildiz and injuring 21 of its staff. Some documents revealed later that the orders to bomb the newspaper's offices were issued by Tansu Geller, the Prime Minister of Turkey then. Decisions were issued to confiscate and prevent the distribution of 220 out of 247 newspaper issues. Before completing its first year, seven of the newspaper's directors were arrested on judicial lawsuits. The Istanbul Criminal Court issued a decision to close the newspaper on the grounds it is a " continuation of the Ozgur Gundam newspaper.
After 17 years, Ozgur Gundam once again
After closing Ozgur Gundam, Yeni Politika was published on 13 April 1995. It was exposed to the same pressure as Ozgur Gundam, but continued the march of free media under many different names. After 17 years of closure, it has once again re-emerged as the voice of the Kurdish people.
Establishing the news agencies
With the rapid technological development and progress, media witnessed significant changes. Media used the new audio and video techniques, along with text and images after 2000s. With these developments, the search started for new media outlets and techniques of audio and video in their bulletins. DAM was the first Kurdish established news agency in the diaspora, in Germany. Mesobotamia news agency was established later in Frankfurt. After shuting it down by the German police, the pressure on the Kurdish media took on an international aspect.The agency staff established the Furat News Agency (ANF) in Belgium this time despite all the efforts and attempts of closing it by the Turkish state. but the agency's website is banned in Turkey and has been subjected to frequent cyber attacks.
Dijla News Agency
The first Kurdish news agency established in Turkey was the Dijla News Agency (DİHA) on April 4, 2002 under the slogan "We will never give up the truth",. It broadcasts in Kurdish, English and Turkish. Although a large number of agency reporters and staff were arrested, they continued to resist all pressures. Like Ozgur Gundam, it was shut down on October 29, 2016 and 27 agency correspondents have been detained in Turkish prisons since March 2017.
JINHA: The first news agency for women
JINHA was founded on March 8, 2012 in Amed and considered the first of its kind in Turkey to have women staff. JINHA has become the voice of the Kurdish people and in particular the voice of women. It opposed all efforts to eliminate women under the yoke of male power and became a media organization led by free women.
JINHA seeks primarly to broadcast women's news, change male discourse in the media, under the full names firstly, but used only the first name later.
It was also pressured to close like many other media outlets in Turkey.
The free media revolution in Rojava
The Kurdish people was subjected in Rojava, Syria to the policies of denial and marginalization for decades. Although they organized their ranks secretly and carried out many media activities, they were very limited due to policies of repression and persecution. In Syria, the legacy of Hawar continued, albeit intermittently. With the rise of the Kurdish People's Freedom Movement in 1980s, the revolutionary and organizational struggle accelerated as well, taking its first steps through the media. Many periodicals and publications were issued, but politically were limited.
In 1956, a magazine in Arabic was first published as the Voice of Kurdistan. Berkhwedan newspaper was published later in Arabic and Kurdish. It mostly reported the fighting in Basurof Kurdistan between the occupying Turkish army soldiers and Kurdish fighters. In parallel with this magazine, and in order to reach to the entire Arab World, a magazine in Arabic was published in Beirut. Many Arab intellectuals and writers wrote in it. Pressure swelled sharply against the Kurdish media in Syria.
This continuous and intermittent media activity has made a quantum leap since 2011, with the Syrian revolution and realizing what might be called the media revolution in Rojava. The Kurdish people of Rojava against the totalitarian regime and the nation-state, achieved an important revolution on the media level. In parallel with these, journalists were able to establish several media platforms such as Ronahi Newspaper, Hawar News Agency and Ronahi Satellite which became the voice of the developed Democratic Nation project in the region. They play key role in exposing the attacks of ISIS mercenaries, the escalating resistance, the attacks of the Turkish occupation state, and the suspicious and the dirty agreements between the Turkish state and the mercenaries of Al-Nusra and ISIS.
The Hawar News Agency
ANHA was founded on March 1, 2013 by a group of journalists in a house built of milk and mud . Its neutrality and the credibility of its news bulletins made it the most important media institution in northern and eastern Syria.
It took it upon itself to spread the Democratic Nation project that had emerged in the Middle East, as well as to bring the voice of the people's resistance to the world. Despite all the circumstances, its correspondents have performed their responsibilities towards the truth and have made great sacrifices, which have reached the point of martyrdom. In its eighth year, HAWAR has built a vast network of correspondents who reported all the latest about this turmoil region and the revolution of its people led by women to the world. It is an agency that adheres to a policy of publishing that does not neutralize or compromise the truth, and contributes to the building of qualified journalists and media professionals.
Martyrs of the Hawar News Agency
While they were covering the displaced situation who fleed from ISIS mercenary attacks in Deir ez-Zor, Hawar News Agency correspondents Hawer Delishan Ibsh, Hoger Mohammed and Rizgar Deniz were killed by a suicide attack. Journalist Dilshan Ibish was martyred during the attack, while journalist Hoger Mohamed was martyred on 14 October, and journalist Rizgar Deniz was martyred on 18 January 2018 in the hospital, where he was also receiving treatment.
During the Turkish occupation state's attacks and mercenaries on Serekaniye, Hawar News Agency correspondent Sa'ad Ahmed was martyred on October 19, 2019.
The legacy of the free media was established with Med TV, which was closed later but this legacy continued over the years despite all the pressures and difficulties. On 20 October 2011, RonahÎ TV air started and its broadcasts began for three hours a day. In a short period of time, the broadcast hours reached 10 hours. In 2014 it began broadcasting 24 hours a day.
The radio broadcast was initially launched in Brussels, Belgium, and the newsroom was moved to Rojava, Syria. Ronahi currently has studios in all provinces of Rojava. It reports the latest developments in Rojava, Syria and the Middle East to the world.
At the beginning of the Rojava revolution, eight teachers and journalists established Ronahi newspaper in Rojava on 14 October 2011. It contributed to the rise of the voice of truth embodied in the democratic nation's approach. The first issue was on 16 October 2011. The newspaper was in the beginning weekly. The 12-page magazine contains many ideological and political tabs, as well as kurdistan tabulations, culture and life.
Within a short period of time, the newspaper was published twice a week, the number of pages increased from 12 to 20 pages, and the number of copies of the newspaper reached tens of thousands. The newspaper is distributed throughout northern and eastern Syria and is currently published in the Kurdish and Arabic.
On October 20, 2012, the first radio station in Rojava, called Judi FM started from Qamishlo. Subsequently, on 19 November 2012, Kobane FM was established, and on April 1, 2013, Rojava FM began broadcasting its programmes. In the occupied Afrin by Turkey, Afrin FM was founded on June 10, 2013, the regular broadcast of Afrin FM radio. During 2014-2015, several radio stations such as Derbasiya FM, Washokani FM, Voice of Khabur, The Voice of Democratic Self-Administration and Rojava FM were established. In 2017, the women's radio station, Star was launched.
The legacy of free media has spread to Basur of Kurdistan whete ROJ News was founded in 2014. The agency broadcasts in Kurdish (Kurmanji and Sorani) as well as in Arabic. Roj News has become one of the most important media outlets in Kurdistan. So far, it has continueed to publish the news in compliance with the principle of truth and objectivity. Roj was also broadcasting in Turkish on its launch, but it stopped in 2019.
The first Kurdish daily newspaper: Azadia Welat
Azadia Welat was the first Kurdish daily newspaper to be published in Turkey. The weekly newspaper was founded on February 26, 1994 until 2006. As of August 15, 2006, it became daily.
It was certainly not easy to publish a Kurdish newspaper in the 1990s, when no one recognized the existence of Kurds and Kurdistan. The newspaper was subjected to various forms of pressure and repression, and was closed due to judicial claims and criminal sentences. Another newspaper was subsequently published under the name of Welate Me. Until 1996, 46 newspapers were published. After closing it by the Turkish occupation state, Azadia Welat was published for a long period of time. It began on August 15, 2006 as the first daily Kurdish newspaper. It was closed and shut down during intermittent periods and in order to fill the gaps, several newspapers were published like Denge Welat on March 24, 2007, Welat in November 2008, Rojev on 16 April 2009, Hawar in May 2009, and Rojev in November 2009, and finally Rojev again in March 2000.
The pressure on the press was not limited to closing and suspending the publication of the newspaper, but the editors-in-chief were sentenced to heavy financial penalties.
Like Dijla News Agency and Ozgur Gundam, Azadia Welat was shut down on 29 October 2016.
During the years 2016-2017, Turkey was administered by a so-called law (decree as a law), which allows executive authorities to apply decrees without reference to the legislative authorities. Under this law many hateful media organizations have been shut down. However, Kurdish journalists did not stand idly by and constantly urged alternatives, and did not deprive the people of the right information. New media institutions have been opened to replace all those that have been closed under those laws.
Accordingly, a newspaper called Kund Okulogo was published instead of Ozgur Gndam, Dijla News Agency instead of Dijla Agency, Shogun instead of JINHA (Women's Agency), and instead of Azadiya Welat, Rojev Media was published. However, the AKP regime did not stop its hostility to the Kurdish media, issuing a new decree as a law, putting all Kurdish media institutions in one package and closing them all.
After closing Rojev Media, Welat newspaper was issued instead. Later, the Mesopotamia news agency was opened, instead of Dijla News Agency. Instead of Shogun, the Women's News Agency was established. JIN news and instead of Ozgur newspaper was published by Yani Yasham.
Welat newspaper has begun publishing electronically, while the rest of the organizations continue to operate effectively. Yani Yasham newspaper has now been suspended due to the Coronavirus.
MED TV: The first Kurdish television channel
MED TV is one of the most important historical turns in the Kurdish media process in the diaspora.
On June 15, 1995, the first Kurdish TV was opened in London. MED TV. At the request of the Turkish occupation state, the Med TV satellite licence was withdrawn on 23 April 1999. A new channel called Medya TV was opened, but it was also shut down by the French authorities. In the same year, Roj TV, was opened in Denmark. Turkey exerted great pressure on Denmark because of Roj TV and the channel was shut down in 2003. Several other TV channels such as Nûçe TV and Stêrk TV were opened later.
Many tv channels broadcast their programs in south of Kurdistan
Such as Nûçe TV, MMC TV, Gûn TV, Newroz Tv, Ronahi Tv, Kurdistan Tv, Kurdistan Tv, Kurdsat Tv, Rojhelat Tv, Zagros Tv, KNN Tv, Tishk Tv, Korek Tv, Vin Tv, GK Hewlêr, Kurd1 Tv, Asosat Tv, Peyam Tv, Hewlê Tv, Stêrk Tv, Kanal4 Tv, Cemawer Tv, KPC Tv, Kliksat Tv, Peyam Tv.
It also publishes several Kurdish newspapers : Ala Me, Ala Azadi, Aso, Awena, Barzan, Badirkhan, Bahdinan, Beyani, Jayour, Javi He, Jawdir, Dinkke Democrat, Dunkie Koumniism, Amro, Afro, Howarty, Heta Nama Dink, Hoal, Holler, Huiye No, Kurdistan Noi, Kurdistan Report, Media, Bishketen, Ribazi Azad, Rikai Kurdistan, R.S.N., Rogji All, Roji Andat, Rognama, Rudaw, Seh Redmi No, War, Arwin, Khabah. Most of these newspapers and magazines use Arabic letters.