A television host in Turkey has been fired after the spokesman for Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) allegedly criticized her for wearing a dress on air that revealed too much cleavage.
AKP Spokesman Huseyin Celik criticized the wardrobe choice and characterized it as “extreme,” but didn’t say which host he was talking about, according to a report on Tuesday in Hurriyet Daily News.
Only later was it reported that he was referring to the host Gozde Kansu who is seen in a video of her television show posted on YouTube strutting down a flight of stairs wearing a layered sequined black mini-dress with a neckline plunging almost to her waist.
“We don’t intervene against anyone, but this is too much. It is unacceptable,” Celik said.
Hurriyet reports that the company that produces the show “Veliaht” is denying that the offending dress was the reason for the firing; rather, it said after just one episode it had decided her style wasn’t compatible with their vision.
Later, party spokesman Celik appeared to try to defend himself, tweeting that he had the right to express himself as an individual, a TV viewer and a politician.
“I never named a show or a person,” he wrote on Twitter. “It was the media who alleged the names."
Here is a video posted on YouTube showing Kansu on "Veliaht":
(H/T: Jerusalem Post)
On Tuesday, Turkey announced it was lifting a ban on women wearing the Islamic headscarf in state jobs, a ban that spans back almost 90 years. Though the reform is apparently aimed at encouraging more conservative Muslim women who cover their heads to seek employment outside the house, secular activists view it as the Islamist-led government pushing a religious agenda.