LOCAL > Swedish woman accused of insulting Turkish PM released

ISTANBUL – Doğan News Agency

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Sarah Olsson was detained June 29 during a protest in Istanbul’s Taksim Square regarding the deadly recent police intervention in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır. DHA  Photo

Sarah Olsson was detained June 29 during a protest in Istanbul’s Taksim Square regarding the deadly recent police intervention in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır. DHA Photo

A Swedish tourist was released by an Istanbul court today after being held under arrest for two days on charges of “insulting Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan” and other state officials in Turkish during protests in Istanbul's Taksim Square on June 29.

Sarah Olsson was detained June 29 during a protest in Taksim Square regarding the deadly police intervention in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır's Lice district.

Olsson, 24, allegedly insulted state officials in Turkish with the rest of the protesting group. However, she denied the accusations as she does not speak Turkish.

She was one of a group of 11 people including a 14-year-old boy who were fiercely intervened with and detained by police.

Olsson’s lawyer, Burak Mengü, said his client was studying journalism at Stockholm University and she was there to observe the ongoing protests. The lawyer also said she did not speak Turkish.

Olsson is supposed to return to Sweden tonight at 9 p.m.

Mengü added that if Olsson had not been detained, she had planned to travel in southern Turkey for the rest of her vacation and remain in the country until Aug. 13.


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mara mcglothin

7/2/2013 2:42:19 AM

VARGEN They are also one of the least religious. hmmmm You are spot on RICHARD WYATT. Laughter would be the result to be sure. No one would even hear this in the USA???

Vargen Vargen

7/1/2013 9:20:58 PM

John Albay. Sweden has among the highest GPD per capita in EU. The lowest corruption in the world, the best gender equality, the highest freedom of speech very generous to developing countries and score high on "happiness indexes" etc etc. And many other things. It is one of the most respected countries in the world and the refugees and immigrants coming there (and they receive many many) are provided with a social welfare support you can not imagine. It is not perfect but still among the best.


7/1/2013 9:12:35 PM

@Wakinyan. Why should one need an excuse to insult your "dear leader" at a time when the latter offends and insults millions in all corners of the globe and on a regular basis? Or does being the PM gives him exclusive rights to offending and or insulting others? Regards

Richard Wyatt

7/1/2013 6:45:52 PM

A young Turkish student should go to Stockholm and shout "Resign Fredrik!" and then see what happens. Swedish laughter and merriment at this strange spectacle. Why can't Turks laugh about this incident? Of course, this Swedish student is an evil foreigner.

Laz K

7/1/2013 6:13:48 PM

@John Albay, Erdogan can't be elected again,but he will become the next President of Turkey AND the AKP will be AGAIN the biggest party of the country,because the opposition is TOO weak and has NO charisma/agenda at all.They would sell Turkey the next day to the highest bidder just like the last Ottomans did with their empire..And foreigners should NOT interfere in Turkish politics, they don't like it when Erdogan does it overthere and she should rather concern herself with racisme in Sweden.

Tekion Particle

7/1/2013 6:13:06 PM

Insulting politicians is part of a daily routine in democratic countries and no one gets arrested or charged. PM and his cronies can insult the people by calling them chapulists and terrorists etc. Is that not an insult? Why do they not get arrested under the same law?

american american

7/1/2013 5:53:35 PM

john, your post is very insulting to that woman. i will send it on to her so she can sue you.

hanni bal

7/1/2013 5:46:50 PM

bye bye swede girl...I hope she learns her lesson well and past her journalism class the right way.Rule 1. respect others and be respected in return.


7/1/2013 5:28:11 PM

Well of course john "free thinkers! run away!!!!" albay would be proud that liberty is quashed immediately. Of course, when tourists no longer feel safe and investors are concerned about unreasonable intrusions, economies rapidly go south. But then he'd be surrounded by like-minded penguins and so much happier.

Çılgın Kanarya

7/1/2013 5:09:03 PM

Well I for one will sleep much easier tonight, knowing that this dangerous individual has been removed from the country! It's so frightening to think that I could have encountered her on one of my many trips to Taksim Square! We all need to be protected from these evil Swedish journalism students! I've also heard that she was brainwashing Turkish people with IKEA catalogues so that they would stop buying locally produced furniture & harm the economy! Gimme Gimme Gimme A Lie Before Midnight .. :)
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