Court issues arrest order to interrogate ‘man with machete’
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet
Footages showing Çelebi attacking protesters had sparked outrage across the country. DHA PhotoAn Istanbul court issued an arrest warrant April 8 for an assailant who sparked outrage after attacking Gezi protesters, who were running from a police crackdown, with a machete near the Taksim square.
The arrest order, however, will be lifted after the assailant Süleyman Çelebi’s interrogation, daily Hürriyet reported.
Çelebi, a shop owner in the Talimhane neighborhood where many hotels are located, was dubbed “the man with the machete” after injuring two people and threatening many others, as footage that surfaced early July confirmed his actions.
He faces up to 5 years in prison for charges of “inflicting injuries” on a protester.
He also faces up to 27 years in a separate trial from the same incident on charges of “inflicting injuries” and “preventing public officers from performing their duty.”
Right after the incident, Çelebi boarded a flight to Morocco anticipating an arrest warrant. He came back to Turkey in August after twice postponing his return, after which he was briefly detained for a first interrogation.
Many Gezi protesters had expressed indignation that Çelebi was not detained pending the trial.