December 7, 2023

07.12.2023 – Media Freedom Under Threat: Deutche Welle Türkçe Faces Renewed Restrictions in Türkiye / Turkey

Deutsche Welle (DW) Türkçe faced renewed access restrictions as a court in Ankara, Türkiye / Turkey implemented a ban upon the Radio and Television Supreme Council’s (RTÜK) request on 17 November 2022. DW Türkçe had previously evaded a ban by operating on alternative domain names ‘’ and ‘,’ which are now also blocked in Türkiye / Turkey.

RTÜK demanded DW to obtain a broadcasting license for its new websites, granting the broadcaster a 72-hour window for application. Despite previous blocks and license disputes, DW Türkçe continued its operations through different domain names. The current ban is a additional case in the attacks by Turkish authorities on international broadcaster.

RTÜK (, has blocked access to Deutsche Welle’s (DW) websites, including ‘’ and ‘’ This move comes after RTÜK’s demand for DW to acquire a broadcasting license for its online presence. DW Türkçe had already faced a block on 30 June, 2022, due to a lack of license application. The recent ban follows the Turkish Ministry of Industry and Technology’s decision not to renew DW Türkçe’s operational license, leading to the closure of its Türkiye / Turkey office.

The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) condemns these actions, considering them a threat to media freedom.

South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) is a regional non-governmental, non-profit network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in Southeast, South, East and Central Europe. SEEMO members are in Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova (with the territory of Transdnestria), Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Türkiye / Turkey, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. Austria, Italy, Vatican and San Marino have a special status in SEEMO. SEEMO has over 3000 individual members, and additional media as corporate members.

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