Prosecutor launches probe into Hürriyet for ‘insulting Erdoğan’

Prosecutor launches probe into Hürriyet for ‘insulting Erdoğan’

Prosecutor launches probe into Hürriyet for ‘insulting Erdoğan’

CİHAN photo

A Turkish prosecutor has launched a probe into daily Hürriyet for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

İdris Kurt, deputy chief prosecutor in Istanbul’s Bakırköy district, initiated the process himself Sept. 7 over claims that daily Hürriyet “twisted Erdoğan’s words to conduct a perception operation.”

Speaking on the pro-government A Haber TV station about the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s (PKK) deadly attack on a military convoy in the southeastern province of Hakkari on Sept. 6, Erdoğan was asked by the presenter: “You said in the inauguration of a metro line that you ‘wanted 400 deputies’ [for the AKP]. It is said that these words played a role in the coming of this conflict period.”

In response, Erdoğan said: “If a political party could have gotten 400 deputies or [a parliamentary majority] to write a new constitution, the situation would be different today.” 

As headline, Hürriyet tweeted, “Dağlıca comment from Erdoğan: ‘This would not have happened if 400 deputies had been given,” while reporting the full text of the interview, leading to accusations among pro-government social media users.

Hürriyet files complaint against AKP MP

Calls were followed by a 200-person mob in an attack on daily Hürriyet’s main office in Istanbul’s Bağcılar district late on Sept. 6.

On Sept. 7, daily Hürriyet filed a criminal complaint against protesters and their leader Abdürrahim Boynukalın, a parliamentary deputy and the head of the Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) youth organization.

In his speech in front of the newspaper’s building, which was pelted with stones by club-wielding protesters, Boynukalın had vowed that Doğan Media, which owns daily Hürriyet, will “get the hell out of Turkey” when Erdoğan will have additional executive powers “whatever the electoral outcome on Nov. 1 will be.”