ANKARA, Turkey – Police used tear gas to disperse hundreds of people protesting against the government’s move to seize control of a company that owns opposition TV stations and is linked to a government critic.
A prosecutor has ordered Koza-Ipek Holding placed under the management of a trustee pending an investigation into its financial links to the movement led by Fethullah Gulen, a U.S.-based moderate Islamic cleric. The government accuses the movement of attempts to destabilize the state.
Demonstrators gathered at Koza-Ipek’s Ankara premises on Tuesday in protest of the decision. Critics denounced the action as a government crackdown on opposition voices ahead of an election Nov. 1.
Koza-Ipek owns opposition television stations Bugun TV and Kanal Turk, the Bugun and Millet newspapers and other business interests.