The British government and the royal family have given President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan the perfect red carpet treatment. Yet, this has infuriated the British press, which has gone out of its way to lambaste the three-day state visit and try to sabotage it through all means possible.
It was clearly a disinformation campaign at the highest level fueled by PKK and members of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) run by Fetullah Gülen, who are very active in London.
Newspaper cartoons, editorials, articles and even radio commentaries were highly critical of Prime Minister Theresa May's government and the palace for welcoming Erdoğan in such a warm manner.
The main question was, "How could the British government welcome Erdoğan, who is running an authoritarian administration?" At the same time, some accused Turkey of undermining human rights and press freedom on a massive scale.
A British radio commentator went out of his way to create drama by declaring: "How can I go to Turkey when hundreds of my brothers and sisters are in jail?"
What is sad is that this one-sided bashing of Turkey and Erdoğan is completely misguiding British public opinion; who now think Turkey is actually run by an authoritarian administration and that the upcoming elections will be unfair and unjust.
All morning, commentators who hardly know anything about Turkey have been repeatedly making remarks that the Turkish press is muted by the Erdoğan administration and that Turkish media has been taken over by the government.
They are unaware that there are several opposition newspapers and TV stations in Turkey that are highly critical of the government and Erdoğan. No one is making any attempts to scuttle or silence them. People use social media very effectively in Turkey and as long as they do not insult or defame anyone, they are allowed to freely publish whatever they want.
Some of the insults published by the widely circulated newspaper Sözcü about the president and his family are sensational; no British newspaper would do this to Teresa May or any other politicians in Britain. The same goes for the Fox TV broadcasts.
This columnist has been the target of such attacks in the past year. You make a perfectly decent statement on Syria and then the opposition press simply twists and turns your comments and then presents it in such a way that is incriminating. This way they try to defame their adversaries through character assassination.
The fact that Turkey is currently going to elections where people freely campaign and lambast the government shows the strength of Turkish democracy. Look at Turkish newspapers and TV news broadcasts.
It seems our British colleagues are either unaware of all this or they are pretending to "not to know" so they can serve their masters who want to continue this war of attrition against Erdoğan.
However, the strong PKK lobby in Britain and the way FETÖ is trying to spread its influence demonstrates the effectiveness of British media's efforts and Turkey does not have the proper means to counter these people. We need to target this if we want the Britons to see the true picture of Turkey.
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