Turkish prosecutors detain dissident theologian Eliaçık

A liberal Islamic theologian, known for his opposition to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has been taken into custody in Istanbul over an arrest warrant issued for him in the southeastern province of Batman, Tele1 reported.

Theologian İhsan Eliaçık was detained while he was in a courthouse in Istanbul to testify for an investigation.

After his deposition, Eliaçık was asked to testify for another investigation launched in Batman via IT Voice and Image System. However, the system did not work and the prosecutors decided to keep Eliaçık under detention until he can testify.

Eliaçık, the head of the Anti-Capitalist Muslims movement, was sentenced to six years and three months in jail for “conducting propaganda for an armed terror organisation” for a speech delivered during a conference in the majority-Kurdish city of Diyarbakır. The court ruled that Eliaçık’s speech and writings constituted propaganda for the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), an armed rebel group that has been fighting Turkish forces for more than three decades.

Eliaçık was still free, pending appeal, but barred from leaving Istanbul during the process.