ADF International

Radio Console

Radio Vatan Ankara v. Turkey

Date of most recent action: 01 Dec 2015

Turkey attempts to ban country’s only Christian radio station

What’s at Stake:

The right to freedom of expression


Radio Vatan is Turkey’s only national Christian radio station. As such, it is greatly valued by the Christian community in Turkey. So given the government’s repeated attempts to restrict Radio Vatan’s accessibility, Turkish Christians are fighting to keep the station free from unwarranted constraints.

Political pressure and religious discrimination have seriously threatened the station’s existence. In recent years, the Turkish Radio and Television Supreme Court has taken more steps to stop Radio Vatan’s free transmission. So far, the station’s broadcast has been terminated in 11 of the most populated provinces in the country, including Ankara, where the station was fully licensed.

These curbs on freedom of expression are unjustifiable, as well as out of line with Turkey’s agreement – as a member of the Council of Europe – to abide by the European Convention on Human Rights. This, combined with its status as a candidate for accession to the European Union, means that Turkey must comply with international human rights law that guarantees both freedom of expression and freedom of religion. The actions it has taken against Radio Vatan are in direct opposition to these rights.

In 2013, ADF International senior counsel, Roger Kiska, joined local attorneys as co-counsel in representing Radio Vatan before the European Court of Human Rights. The case has been filed with the Court and is ongoing.

Our Role in the Case

ADF International brought this crucial case before the European Court of Human Rights and is working to see a positive outcome for religious freedom in Turkey.

Legal Documents

Letter to European Commissioner – 05 July 2013

European Commissioner Response – 03 Oct 2012

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