Click to read the article in Turkish
Journalist Hasan Cemal deposed yesterday (December 6) after being summoned to the Prosecutor's Office for the allegation that he had insulted President and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in his article entitled "Diktat, Dictator".
He came to the Çağlayan Courthouse in İstanbul with his attorney Fikret İlkiz.
In his two-page statement of defense, Cemal stated that what he wrote in his article is within the limits of freedom of expression and pleaded not guilty.
Cemal was also asked about a Twitter account named Fuat Avni, which is said to be propagandizing for the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), which is held responsible for the coup attempt on July 15, 2016.
The journalist answered "I don't know Fuat Avni. What I know about him is what I see about him on the media, like everyone. Making connections between my article and what Fuat Avni wrote is wrong."
'This investigation is unlawful'
Fikret İlkiz, attorney of Hasan Cemal, stated that they appealed for a verdict of non-prosecution:
"Launching an investigation for insulting the president is unlawful. In an investigation which was started on the ground of the Article 299 of the Turkish Penal Code, it is contrary to the Law on Penal Courts to try to make a connection with the FETÖ/PDY organization."
'You cannot scare me'
Hasan Cemal also responded to a news story of a pro-government newspaper Yeni Akit on Twitter. The newspaper brought Hasan Cemal to its headline yesterday, with the title "The West Poured Money to Hasan Cemal's Independent Platform for Journalism: This is How They Feed Treachery", referring to the P24 platform.
Yeni Akit also claimed that Cemal is "fugitive and abroad" on the day when he deposed to the Prosecutor's Office. Cemal said, "You will give account to the judiciary because of the slanders and lies" on Twitter. (OI/EKN/VK)
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