Footballer faces up to five years for ‘PKK propaganda’ on Twitter
DİYARBAKIR – Doğan News AgencyA Turkish third-tier footballer playing in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır faces up to five years in prison for seven social media posts that prosecutors have said constitute “terrorist propaganda.”
Amedspor player Deniz Naki is expected to appear in the dock in the following days after a Diyarbakır prosecutor completed an indictment against him, demanding up to five years for posts shared on his Facebook and Twitter accounts.
In the document against Naki, prosecutors highlighted seven social media posts made through Naki’s account, which the player confirmed, and alleged that the footballer attempted to “incite hatred and hostility toward a group by another group who bore different characteristics due to its region, to undermine the region’s locals’ trust in the Turkish Republic and overtly make propaganda for the PKK/KCK terror organization,” a reference to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK).
Naki, a German-born player with origins in the Dersim area, previously played at St. Pauli in Hamburg as well as Gençlerbirliği in Ankara, until he suffered an attack by ultranationalists. The player subsequently began playing at Amedspor but was handed a 12-match ban by the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) for conducting “ideological propaganda” during a cup match against Bursaspor earlier in 2016.