Thursday, February 26, 2015

No freedom of speech in Turkey

Merve Buyuksarac is a Turkish model. Last month she shared a poem satirising Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on her Instagram account. Now, she's been detained, and is facing two years in jail:

A former model and Miss Turkey could face up to two years for social media posts that prosecutors have deemed to be critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

A lawyer for the model Merve Buyuksarac said today that an Istanbul prosecutor is demanding she be prosecuted on charges of insulting a public official. A court will decide whether to start proceedings.

The idea that you can't mock or satirise elected officials seems peculiarly authoritarian. But that's pretty much Turkey in a nutshell. They're not a democracy, and won't be until their leaders stop pretending they're still Sultan.