Access blocked to report on incident involving Erdoğan’s son

A court previously banned a Bianet report on the killing of musician Tanürek after being hit by a car that Burak Erdoğan, the elder son of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, was driving in 1998.

Istanbul 2nd Anatolian Penal Judgeship of Peace has ordered an access block on a Bianet report titled, "Access to Reports on Tenürek's Killing Blocked After Burak Erdoğan's Request."

According to Bianet, the verdict was given after Burak Erdoğan's application. The court also blocked access on a tweet by lawyer Efkan Bolaç about Burak Erdoğan. "A broadcast ban has been imposed on the accident Burak Erdoğan involved in. Does it mean that the accident never happened if there is a broadcast ban? What was the law?" said the tweet dated June 20, 2018.

The decision said the report included descriptions and comments that are not necessary, useful or relevant, pointing out that a news report should be good for public interest and should strike a balance between the essence and the shape to remain within the scope of the right to inform.

The judgeship also said that the report was provocative and had a language that is creating animosity and suspicion in the public and damages confidence.

During the election campaign before the presidential election on June 24, 2018, the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) candidate Muharrem İnce addressed Erdoğan in a rally, saying, "Let's investigate the murder of Sevim Tanürek, if you wish." Access to online reports, that include these remarks from İnce was banned, including the reports by Bianet, Diken and Cumhuriyet.


Here is how Tanürek was killed, according to the Cumhuriyet report that was blocked by Istanbul 9th Penal Judgeship of Peace in Order No. 2018/3229 on June 19, 2018.

Sevim Tanürek, a Turkish classical music artist at the state-run TRT Istanbul Radio, was hit by a car while she was walking on a pedestrian crossing in Şişli district on May 11, 1998. The driver was Burak Erdoğan, the son of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who was the Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality at the time.

Immediately after the accident, water tenders of the municipality arrived and cleaned traces of blood and brakes on the street.

In the traffic report about Ahmet Burak Erdoğan, the error rate was determined as three out of eighth because of "absentminded driving." The prosecutor demanded a prison sentence from 3 to 20 months, on the basis of the police report.

Sevim Tanürek died in the hospital on May 16, 1998.

After her death, an additional indictment was issued against Ahmet Burak Erdoğan and the requested prison term was changed to 2 to 5 years.

Mayor Erdoğan immediately provided a grave for Sevim Tanürek and covered the hospital expenses. The family withdrew their complaint. However, the case continued.

The court asked the Forensic Medicine Traffic Specialization Department for an accident report. The department, headed by mechanical engineer Eyüp Çakmak, released a report that said Burak Erdoğan was "totally faultless" and the error rate of Tanürek was eight out of eight.

The court acquitted Burak Erdoğan.

After Erdoğan became the prime minister, Çakmak was appointed as the Deputy General Director of Maritime Business.