Erdoğan appoints cousin to serve as deputy education minister

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan with the issuance of a decree has appointed his cousin, İbrahim Er, to serve as deputy education minister, Cumhuriyet daily reported on Wednesday.

Erdoğan on July 9 had named his son-in-law, former Energy Minister Berat Albrayrak, as the treasury and finance minister. Albayrak was also made a member of Turkey’s Supreme Military Council by Erdoğan on July 15.

According to the report, Er who was a member of the Council of State, was appointed along with Reha Denemeç as a deputy to the education minister. Er was serving as general director of elementary education when he was named a member of the Council of State in 2011.

Ahmet Hamdi Çamlı, who used to be President Erdoğan’s driver, was elected as a member of parliament in the 2015 elections.

Erdoğan also on Wednesday appointed Professor Fahrettin Altun, a columnist for the Sabah newspaper, to serve as head of the communications department that was recently created in the transition to a presidential system of governance. “All media has been put under the control of a Sabah columnist,” Cumhuriyet daily wrote in its commentary on Altun’s appointment.

Altun, general coordinator of pro-Erdoğan think tank the Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) and a columnist for Sabah and Daily Sabah dailies, both part of the Turkuvaz Media Group run by Serhat Albayrak, the brother of Erdoğan’s son-in-law, Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak, was also contributing two programs to Turkey’s public broadcaster, the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT).

Fecir Alptekin, corporate communications group president at Turkuvaz, was appointed an adviser to Erdoğan.

Meanwhile, two top-level executives at Turkey’s pro-government aHaber TV have been transferred to the previously independent CNN Türk, the Cumhuriyet daily reported.

aHaber’s chief editor Murat Yancı and news editor Kubilay Gülbek have struck a deal with CNN Türk, the former news channel of the Doğan Media Group, which was sold to a pro-government conglomerate in March 2018, Cumhuriyet reported.

CNN Türk has been home to a shakedown since the March takeover of the Doğan media group by businessman Erdoğan Demirören, who has close ties to Turkish President Erdoğan and his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Demirören Holding’s purchase of the Doğan media conglomerate for $916 million earlier this year was seen by many critics as the last nail in the coffin of free media in Turkey, where over 90 percent of newspapers and television coverage is pro-government. (SCF with

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