Inmates punished for cartoon allegedly insulting Turkish President Erdoğan in prison publication

Six inmates in a prison in the northwestern province of Bolu have been given 10 days of solitary confinement as punishment for allegedly insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in a cartoon they drew for a monthly in-prison magazine, the Bianet news website reported on Wednesday.

One of the inmates, Emrah Yayla, sent a letter to Bianet to explain the incident. Yayla wrote that in addition to him, five other prisoners were put in solitary confinement for a cartoon they drew for the Ayvaz monthly culture and arts magazine they put together in prison. He did not specify which of the prisoners drew the cartoon.

Yayla said the petitions they wrote demanding cancellation of the punishment have not been processed by the prison administration.

Hundreds of people in Turkey, even including high school students, face charges of insulting President Erdoğan. The slightest criticism is considered an insult, and there has been a rise in the number of cases in which people inform on others claiming that they insulted the president, the government or government officials.

Hundreds of people in Turkey, including even high school students, face charges of insulting President Erdoğan. The slightest criticism is considered an insult, and there has been a rise in the number of cases in which people inform on others claiming that they insulted the president, the government or government officials.

Moreover, according to a report by Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency on July 21, police teams under the command of the cybercrime unit have determined the existence of 126,000 social media accounts related to alleged terrorist organizations in the last two years.

The report said about 50,000 out of 68,000 profiled social media accounts that allegedly posted pro-coup messages in the wake of a coup bid in July 2016 belong to alleged members of the Gülen movement.

According to the report, 17,000 of the social media accounts are allegedly linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), while a thousand of them are said to be connected to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

It was also claimed that 60 percent of social media posts believed to be supportive of “terrorist organizations” have been made by alleged members of the Gülen movement. The Turkish government led by President Erdoğan has labeled the pacifist Gülen movement as a “terrorist organization,” calling it “FETÖ.” (SCF with turkishminute.com)

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