AP: Critics allege Dogan's fine has political motives

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AP: Critics allege Dogans fine has political motives
Oluşturulma Tarihi: Şubat 21, 2009 00:00

The Associated Press said critics of the government believe that the tax fine imposed on the Dogan Group has political motives, adding that the media group has been a biting critic of the government.

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Here is the full article:

"Turkey hits media group with big fine in tax dispute; critics allege political motives

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) _ Turkey’s main opposition party is accusing the prime minister of trying to muzzle the media after the government hit Turkey’s biggest media group with a large fine over a tax dispute.

Opposition lawmaker Atilla Kart said Friday the US$500 million (euro395 million) in fines on media mogul Aydin Dogan is an attempt to silence critics ahead of local elections in March.

Backers of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan say Dogan’s media group flouted tax regulations and should obey the law like any other company.

The government says the Dogan group made a late tax payment on 25 percent of shares in a television station that were sold to German publisher Axel Springer. The media group says it paid the tax on time.

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The Dogan group has been a sharp critic of policies of the Islamic-oriented government, and engaged in a public spat with the prime minister last year."

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