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ʿAmudah: Asayiş closes radio station

KURDWATCH, February 26, 2014—On February 18, 2014, employees of the Asayiş, the security service of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), occupied the rooms of the private radio station ARTA FM in ʿAmudah. They demanded that the majority of the employees leave their workplaces, and the offices were subsequently searched. The regular broadcast was taken off air, and only music could be broadcast. On February 20, the regular programming could be resumed. The Asayiş justified the measures against ARTA FM by claiming that an additional unauthorized radio station, Radio MICT, was broadcasting from the rooms. Although the administration of ARTA FM presented the PYD with a corresponding authorization, the broadcasting of Radio MICT was cut off. Prior to the closure, employees of ARTA FM had accused the director of the station, Sirwan Hajj Husayn, of corruption and self-enrichment. Hajj Husayn denied the accusations.

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