Hundreds of Turkish academics are waiting to find out whether they will be prosecuted or sacked for spreading “terrorist propaganda”, after they signed a petition calling for violence to end in Turkey’s southeast, where government forces have been fighting Kurdish separatists.
After the petition provoked a furious response from Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, several universities in the country have begun investigations into signatories among their faculty — which could lead to their dismissal if accusations of unlawful political agitation hold up. On 15 January, police arrested and later released 27 academics, according to local media reports, including economists, physicians and scientists.
In the latest example of petty tyranny from NATO member and U.S. government “ally” Turkey, a former Miss Turkey has been convicted of sharing a satirical poem that insulted thin-skined President Tayyip Erdoğan.
A court has convicted a former Miss Turkey of insulting the president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, through social media postings and handed her a 14-month suspended sentence.
The court on Tuesday found 27-year-old Merve Büyüksaraç guilty of insulting a public official. She would have to serve the sentence if she reoffends.
Büyüksaraç, who was crowned Miss Turkey in 2006, was briefly detained for sharing a satirical poem on her Instagram account in 2014. Prosecutors deemed it to be insulting to Erdoğan, who was prime minister at the time.
Since becoming president in 2014, Erdoğan has filed close to 2,000 defamation cases under a previously seldom-used law that prohibits insulting the president.
How cute, the cry baby dictator remains hard at work protecting himself from insults.