Pro-AKP journalist gives testimony over threatening Hürriyet columnist
Burcu Purtal Uçar – ISTANBULA journalist close to the Justice and Development Party (AKP) has given testimony on his death threat against daily Hürriyet columnist Ahmet Hakan, saying his former statement was not a death threat, but “ironic” criticism, daily Hürriyet has reported.
Daily Star columnist Cem Küçük gave testimony on Oct. 14 in an investigation launched into his former statement threatening Hakan, a leading journalist and popular TV programmer. He said his statement was not a death threat, but rather “ironic” criticism.
Küçük from daily Star, a Turkish newspaper close to the AKP, had said, “We can quash you like a mosquito if we wish,” in an article dated Sept. 9, 2015 addressing Hakan.
Hakan, in response, filed a criminal complaint with the chief public prosecutor’s office in Istanbul’s Küçükçekmece district against Küçük on charges of “threatening with death,” “inciting murder,” “slandering,” and “defaming.”
In their criminal complaint, Hakan’s attorneys Turgut Kazan and Aslı Kazan said Küçük committed the offensives of threatening with death and inciting murder in an unprecedented manner in the media world, adding that the article was penned to incite murder.
In his testimony, Küçük said the wording of his article was no different than former conversations between Küçük and Hakan and that all statements in his article were “ironic.”
“We criticized him in a harsh language,” he added.
In early September, Küçük criticized Hakan in his article, saying “Like schizophrenia patients, you think you are still living in the days when Hürriyet was running the country. We can quash you like a mosquito if we want. We have been merciful until today and you are still alive.”
In his article, Küçük claimed Hakan had supported the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) before the June 7 election, an election that cost the AKP its parliamentary majority, while the Kurdish problem-focused Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) crossed the national election threshold and entered parliament.