Owner of printing house briefly detained over placard targeting Turkish President Erdoğan

The owner of an Ankara printing house that had printed a placard with cartoons targeting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was briefly detained on Wednesday.

An Ankara court on Wednesday sent four students from Middle East Technical University (METU) to pretrial detention for allegedly insulting Erdoğan with a placard they carried during the university’s graduation ceremony, according to a report by Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency.

The caricature was first published in 2006 by the Penguen political satire magazine, against which then-Prime Minister Erdoğan filed a lawsuit. However, an Ankara court had dismissed the suit, citing freedom of expression.

The Ankara Bar Association’s Vice President Erinç Sağkan told Deutsche Welle (DW) on Wednesday that the owner of the printing house that printed the placard for the ceremony was detained along with the four students. While the students were put in pretrial detention, the printing house owner was released later on Wednesday.

ODTÜ’s graduation ceremonies for years have had a tradition of humorous and critical placards about current political developments in Turkey. (SCF with turkeypurge.com)

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