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Monday, March 15, 2010

Press Snippets: An Overview of Buzz

By Adelind Osmanlı reporting from Munich, Germany

Screencap of reportTarkan Deluxe takes another look at some of the coverage in the Turkish press in the last few weeks, as paper Milliyet's celebrity journalist Ali Eyüboğlu today talks of the conspiracy theories circulating over recording artist Tarkan's detention by Istanbul's police authorities for four days during a drug operation (see left pic).

Eyüboğlu writes that he couldn't believe the claims coming from a lawyer printed in Hürriyet correspondent Yalçın Bayer's article.

Lawyer Remzi Kazmaz - hailing from the singer's paternal homestead of Rize in the Turkish Black Sea region - claims that Tarkan has effectively been blocked from supporting a nature campaign to stop the government building a controversial hydro-powered dam in his late father's home region, since being taken in by police for questioning - hinting at a hidden agenda over Tarkan's detainment.

Eyüboğlu ridicules the claims: "What interests me are all these conspiracy theories [coming out over Tarkan's detention]. I've heard everything, even the one about narcotics police taking Tarkan in for angering the government at not attending their recent democratic conference with its celebrities, but this is too much of a stretch for anyone's imagination," he says.

Milliyet had reported that Tarkan had been planning to visit Rize in support of the latest nature campaign on 3 March, but it had been cancelled because of his four day custody, while other media organisations wondered whether the detainment wasn't some form of "pay-back" for Tarkan's nature campaign in southeastern Turkey against the powers-that-be.

From Pin-up to Pass-up

Meanwhile, from being the largest name in Istanbul's inauguration as a 2010 European Capital of Culture to being the largest catch of the same city's recent narcotic investigation, some reports are trying to give the impression that Tarkan is no longer the first choice for private functions, with his image now seemingly tainted by his four day lock-up.

Screencap of reportsAs Vatan writes that Tarkan has been passed up as first choice for the annual police officers' ball in April, other reports have focused on a range of issues that seem to take for granted the singer is guilty (see left pic).

Governor of Adana, İlhan Atış, is quoted as saying that now Tarkan has been "caught using drugs" he should publicly come out against it, a columnist for Turktime claims that Tarkan's drug use has been an open secret amongst narcotic police for years, and says that the real question is why has Tarkan been busted now. The columnist claims that the singer has been used a high profile scapegoat to have the authorities seem like they're attacking city's the drug trafficking problems, which have been highlighted in recent reports outside its borders.

There is also news that readers have emailed in to complain about what seems like Star Gazete's unfair reporting by keeping the anonymity of the other's detained along with Tarkan and only mentioning the recording artist by name, and that the artist had been found guilty without a trial (Medyakafe), while a columnist calls Tarkan being greeted like a hero as "sickening" (Internetajans) and another report writes that Tarkan has shut himself up in the recording studio for his new record and changed his group of friends (Skyturkonline).

Elsewhere, a Zaman report groups Tarkan together with other Turkish celebrities that have actually been charged of drug abuse, stating that even admitting use is a crime, while in its Romanian edition there is a report that writes about Tarkan's "drug use being uncovered" in an article about Romanian TV star Andreea Marin Banica.

"I haven't made such a big mistake like him, but we in the public eye mustn't disappoint our fans," Banica was quoted as saying.

<< Read about Tarkan's four day detainment by Turkish authorities here

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