Ankara, Sep 17 () - President Tayyip Erdoğan has slammed the editors of Turkish magazine Nokta, which was raided by police over its latest issue showing a photomontage of Erdoğan taking a selfie in front of a killed soldier’s coffin, as “dishonorable and despicable.”
Speaking in a TV interview late on Sept. 16, Erdoğan said “the law should give the answer” to Nokta.
“This cannot be called freedom of press. I’ve never even taken a selfie throughout my life. Some may do so, but I don’t. And I am not so dishonorable as to turn my back on a martyr’s coffin. Those who made the magazine cover are themselves dishonorable and despicable” he added.
“They know my character. I‘ll do whatever is needed, in line with the law. I have given orders to my lawyers” Erdoğan said.
The president said he was “uncomfortable” when he saw the magazine cover, describing it as an “attack on his personality, principles, and beliefs” and vowing that the editors would “pay the price” for this.
He also asked whether Nokta’s editors would be able to publish a picture of U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, one an ally but now an arch-enemy, on the same cover.
Nokta’s office in Istanbul’s Okmeydanı neighborhood was raided by Istanbul Police Department officers on charges of “insulting the Turkish president” and “making terrorist propaganda” in the early hours of Sept. 14, as the magazine was preparing to deliver its latest issue.
The magazine’s chief news editor Murat Çapan was also detained on charges of “insulting the Turkish president” and “making terrorist propaganda.” He was sent to court with a demand to be arrested, and he was later released on probation.
Copies of the Nokta’s 18th issue were confiscated after the police department filed a request with the Istanbul Public Prosecutor’s Office to obtain permission to conduct a search of its HQ, collect copies of its 18th issue, and block access to the magazine’s Twitter account because “content of Nokta’s 18th issue is considered insulting to the president.”