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Turkey: Man punches ‘protestor’ carrying a flag that reads ‘There is no God but Allah’, police start investigating a journalist who praised the act

Turkesh journalist Fatih Altyali is facing police probe after he posted ‘well done’ responding to student Ege Akersoy punching a man carrying an Islamic flag. The student has been arrested and sent to jail

A prominent journalist in Turkey is the subject of an inquiry by Turkish prosecutors after he applauded an offender earlier this week. The journalist’s comments were in support of a university student who had assaulted a demonstrator waving an Islamic flag on 1st January. The journalist has been identified as Fatih Altyali. He has a massive following of over 2.6 million on X and more than 8 lakh subscribers on his official YouTube channel.

He responded to the incident in which university student Ege Akersoy punched İsmail Aydemir, a protestor for carrying a flag bearing the Islamic “word of Tawhid” (unity) that means “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger”. Responding to the assault, he had posted a message on his social media that read “Eline sağlık” which is translated to “Well done.” The occurrence transpired during an anti-Israel rally in İstanbul.

Source: Tele1

As part of an inquiry by the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, Fatih Altyali is allegedly accused of “praising a crime and a criminal.” He is being probed for reportedly “fomenting hatred and enmity among the public” in connection with remarks he made regarding the attendees of a recent anti-Israel event in Ankara in a video that was posted on 24th December.

The journalist informed the T24 news website that he was called in by prosecutors on 3rd January and is going to the prosecutor’s office on 5th January with his attorney. He removed his statement on X and clarified in a video released to his YouTube channel that he had not intended to applaud the attack and had not made any personal reference to anyone when he wrote the contentious tweet.

After working for several news organisations in the past, Fatih Altyali now runs a YouTube channel where he posts his opinions on a variety of domestic and global topics and his videos draw millions of views.

Background of the instance

According to the Kronos news website, a pro-government foundation staged an anti-Israel protest in Istanbul on 1st January during which a university student was detained for hitting a protestor displaying an Islamic flag. Tens of thousands of people protested in Istanbul against Israel’s war in Gaza and the murder of Turkish soldiers in Iraq by prohibited Kurdish militants. The pro-government Turkey Youth Foundation (TÜGVA) whose members include President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s son Bilal arranged the protest.

Turkish media sources stated that Ege Akersoy, a fourth-year engineering student at Yıldız Technical University in İstanbul punched İsmail Aydemir, one of the protestors while he was holding an Islamic flag. The former was then taken into custody by law enforcement at Karaköy Police Station. Afterwards, a court ordered his arrest and transported him to Metris Prison.

Ege Akersoy is seen in a clip taken after the event asking İsmail Aydemir why he didn’t have the Turkish flag instead while a visibly wounded İsmail Aydemir questioned the former’s Muslim faith.

Many argued that the action was out of proportion to the conduct whereas others contended that İsmail Aydemir ought to have been punished for raising a “caliphate flag” in the first place. The people charged him with “revolting against the constitutional order” for proposing the restoration of the caliphate which Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the man who founded modern Turkey had destroyed in 1924.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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