Turkey arrests woman for insulting Atatürk during commemoration ceremony

Turkish prosecutors have ordered the arrest of a woman who allegedly insulted Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the republic and the first president, during a ceremony on Nov. 10 to commemorate the 80th anniversary of his death, Turkish news outlet T24 reported on Sunday.

Twenty-one year old Emine Şahin of Trakya University was detained by police during a ceremony commemorating the death of the founder of the Turkish republic in the northwestern province of Edirne on Saturday.

"Atatürk is not a deity. There are rules of God. Atatürk brought the rules of the West,’’ Şahin is reported to have yelled during the ceremony.

Şahin, in her statement the police, said remembering Atatürk in such a ceremony was ‘’against her religious beliefs,’’ and she did not regret what she said, T24 reported.  

Turkey commemorates Atatürk each year on Nov.10 at 9:05 a.m. - the date and time of death of the first Turkish president. Life in the country comes to a halt while sirens are sounded for two minutes  and flags are held at half-mast across the country.

The founder of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk has been under the protection of the Turkish constitution by the article 5816 since July 1951, and insulting Atatürk has been accepted as a crime in Turkey.