Famous Turkish actor accused of inciting armed revolt in TV comments

Turkish prosecutors filed a police report against Turkish actor Metin Akpınar for “inciting armed revolt against the Turkish republic.’’ (Twitter)

Turkish prosecutors on Monday filed a police report against Turkish actor Metin Akpınar for “inciting armed revolt against the Turkish republic,’’ Vatan newspaper reported.

Earlier Metin Akpinar, a well-known comedian in Turkey, was accused of making “insulting” statements that alluded to Turkish President Erdogan.

“If we do not reach this (democracy), like what happened to all forms of fascism, the leader might be hung from his feet or maybe poisoned in the cellars or meet the same end as other leaders in the past,” he reportedly said on television on Friday.

The Istanbul public prosecutor said on Sunday that Akpinar was being investigated over “insulting comments that targeted the Turkish president with coup and death threats”.

Akpinar, 77, and another Turkish actor, Mujdat Gezen, had been taken by police officers separately to give testimony in the same investigation.

Akpinar had also claimed on opposition Halk TV that any leader who “turned to Russia except Mustafa Kemal (Ataturk) left office” through coups. Ataturk was the founder of modern Turkey.

Turkey has witnessed three military coups in 1960, 1971 and 1980. In 1997, an army-led campaign forced the government to resign and then in July 2016, there was an attempted overthrow of Erdogan blamed on a US-based Muslim preacher.

Akpinar said democracy was the “only option to save Turkey from polarization”.

Gezen, 75, was more direct in his remarks against Erdogan on the same program: “He tells the people ‘know your place’. Look Recep Tayyip Erdogan, you cannot test our patriotism. Know your place.”

The investigation into the men came after the president said on Sunday: “They should be brought to account for this by the judiciary.”

Erdogan hit out at the “so-called artists” during a speech in Istanbul. “We cannot leave this business without giving a response, they will pay the price.”

Thousands of Turks including artists and journalists have been prosecuted in recent years over allegedly insulting Erdogan, although most have not been imprisoned.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:54 - GMT 06:54
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