Pro-government TV censors Kurdish FC's name
A pro-government commentator changed the Kurdish name of a football team into Turkish official language, during a live broadcast on Turkish channel A spor on Friday.
Erman Toroglu, known in Turkey for his previous controversial comments, used "Diyarbakir" instead of the club's name, Amedspor. Diyarbakir is the official Turkish name of the Kurdish city in southeastern Turkey called "Amed" by the Kurds.
During the broadcast, Toroglu was talking about a referee change for the Amedspor-Sanliurfaspor match when he made the nationalistic blunder:
"I received an interesting news today. They changed the referee for the Urfa-Diyarbakir match," he said.
The referee change, which was made after Sanliurfaspor appealed, was also contested by Amedspor.
"There is no explanation for the reason. There are explanations from Diyarbakır and Urfa. I asked if the federation gave any explanation, but no. They only said they were dismissed," Toroglu said in a comment that seemed to support Amedspor's challenge.
Earlier in the day, Amedspor protested against the Central Referees Committee (MHK)
Amedspor, the football team of a Kurdish province, has long been the target of racist attacks for being associated with the PKK.
In October, the team and its supporters faced racist chants at a match in western Turkey following a suicide bombing in the southern province of Mersin. "We need you to destroy them, especially after the terrorist attack in Mersin," the city's gendarmerie commander said before the game
While such chants and comments have flown under the radar, Amedspor fans and players have been subjected to physical attacks and verbal insults. In one incident in 2020, an Amedspor manager was beaten and thrown from a staircase.