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This phone conversation sheds light on the manipulative relationship that exists between the AKP government and Habertürk. Habertürk is owned by CİNER Media group. It would appear that in return for certain concessions, Mehmet Fatih Saraç was appointed to Habertürk as the executive at the directive of the AKP. 

1. Conversation between Mehmet Fatih Saraç and Hüseyin Çelik (prominent AKP MP) (TAPE ID: 1844528065) Date: 31.12.2012 Time: 16.23 

Hüseyin Çelik: By the way, may your new mission bring you fortune.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: From now on, give me a call in advance. I will be more comfortable if you don’t call me in the morning. Thats all I want to say. Do you understand?

Hüseyin Çelik: What?

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Whatever you desire, call me in advance. It will be more comfortable than calling me in the morning. We can sit down one day and talk the issues over. 

Hüseyin Çelik: If god wills it. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: But I mean directly. That is the kind of mission I have been assigned. 

Hüseyin Çelik: Ok ok. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: I mean whatever you desire. 

Hüseyin Çelik: Thank you. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Our elder knows… (referring to PM Erdoğan)

Hüseyin Çelik: Kenan is also someone you will get along with.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Yes, both Kenan and Fatih are tied to my command.

Hüseyin Çelik: Thank you, ok.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: So we are in a strong position, may god will it so. 

Hüseyin Çelik: Ok, may god make make things easier for you. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: But my request from you is that you approach me in a straightforward way so that I can be relaxed in what I do. 

Hüseyin Çelik: I’m going to come to Istanbul soon. My advice is, don’t rush the thing in Ankara. You appointed a girl there, lets talk about it first, ok?

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: We need to talk on other things aswell. 

Hüseyin Çelik: Ok, agreed. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: I’m going to meet our elder tomorrow. After that I will come to Ankara to seek your council because I want to make sure I get off to a good start. 

2. Conversation between Mehmet Fatih Saraç and Taner Yıldız (Minister of Energy and Natural Sources) (TAPE ID: 1846932693) Date: 01.01.2013 Time: 20.00

 Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Dear Minister, I’m with company, let me leave… (leaves the room) How are you, I hope all is well?

Taner Yıldız: Thank you.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: They summoned me to the estate today. I went. 

Taner Yıldız: How did it go? 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Very well. I was told to get in contact with this person and that person, make sure that things runs this way and that way. It was in relation to my new job you know.

Taner Yıldız: Good he he. (laughs)

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: He (PM Erdoğan) also told me that I needed to remain there (at Habertürk) so that whenever he calls, he can reach me there. I told him that this wasn’t the place where I earn my living, that I wasn’t paid a single penny there. We came to an understanding in half a day though. 

Taner Yıldız: Very good. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: In which case, I have a favour to ask of you. You speak to the PM. Before the winter sets in.. for example we turned a blind eye to the Uludere incident this year as you know, as a TV station, we turned a blind eye completely. 

Taner Yıldız: True.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Thank god we didn’t hear about the issue neither on TV, nor in print. He must have noticed this also because he said, “when the media is not behind it, they can’t even gather 1000 people”. 

Taner Yıldız: That’s exactly how it is.

3. Conversation between Mehmet Fatih Saraç and Yalçın Akdoğan (chief advisor to PM) 

A direct contact between Habertürk and PM Erdoğan is established through the PM’s cheif advisor Yalçın Akdoğan.  

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Yesterday I was in Üsküdar, he invited me to his house.

Yalçın Akdoğan: Hmm.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: We spoke about certain things. He said you should be the bridge between him (PM Erdoğan) and myself. If you could also just talk to him.

Yalçın Akdoğan: Hmm. 

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: You understand what I am talking about, right?

Yalçın Akdoğan: Yes I know. I tried calling you when I was in Istanbul, your phone was switched off. I was going to say lets get together and talk things over.

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Yes. I need to remain focused. I requested him to name one person (to function as a bridge) because quite often, different people want different things and say different things which contradict. When this happens, I get confused and get stuck in the middle. Then I have to act according to my own beliefs.

Yalçın Akdoğan: Yes

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: It hasn’t happened yet but this can result in errors. 

Yalçın Akdoğan: So let’s be in touch. You tell me ‘this goes there’..

Mehmet Fatih Saraç: Lets meet face to face as well though. We can clarify things that way. One request I have of you, let me know in advance, one day or half a day in advance, because it is much harder to change things once they have been prepared. It will be easier in advance. 

Yalçın Akdoğan: Ok, god willing. 

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