- A Turkish actress has been acquitted of insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Twitter, daily Hürriyet has reported when Erdoğan was Turkey's prime minister two years ago.
Gonca Vuslateri was tried over a tweet posted in 2013 when Erdoğan was prime minister, but was acquitted of “insulting” after a court on Feb. 2 dropped the charges.
Vuslateri had posted a tweet including a cartoon from a satirical comic during a live broadcast of Erdoğan speaking during a group meeting of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) on June 25, 2013.
Hundreds of cases have been filed on allegations of insulting Erdoğan through social media postings, placards, news reports and verbal statements uttered in street demonstrations.
Most recently, an indictment prepared by an Istanbul prosecutor carries a penalty of four years and eight months in jail for daily Cumhuriyet columnist Özgür Mumcu over an op-ed titled “Tyrant and A Coward” that was published on May 18, 2015 and that purportedly insulted Erdoğan.
“As a columnist, I used my right to criticize. I'm a lawyer and professor myself. The testimonies and annexes that we have presented to court include samples of European Court of Human Rights [ECHR] rulings and also domestic laws. Therefore, I do not accept the accusations,” Mumcu said in court on Feb. 2.
Also recently, a public prosecutor in Istanbul's Bakırköy district demanded five years and four months in prison for İrfan Değirmenci, a program host at private broadcaster Kanal D, over a placard reading “Murderer Erdoğan” seen in a video footage shown during his news program on Sept. 20, 2015.