Jul 28 2018

Erdoğan Facebook critic arrested

A Facebook user who shared friends-only posts critical of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been arrested and sent to pre-trial detention, left-nationalist news site OdaTV said.

Turgay İnce was detained during a joint operation by Kadiköy and Başakşehir police forces in Istanbul as a result of the efforts of Burak Bekiroğlu, a high-profile lawyer best known for opening cases against four former ministers as alleged members of an outlawed religious movement.

In a number of Facebook posts, İnce called members of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) “dishonourable” and “immoral”, called Erdoğan “ignoble”, “brazen”, “a traitor”, “a liar”, and “an idiot” as well as suggesting he had been involved in theft, and said that the July 15 coup attempt was a false flag by the ruling party.

Hundreds of people have been detained in Turkey since the start of the year for their social media posts, with cases this month including two British and one German tourist accused of sympathising with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a militant Kurdish autonomist group engaged in an ongoing conflict in Turkey’s southeast.