फेसबुक पर राष्ट्रपति का कार्टून लाइक करने पर पत्रकार को सजा

तुर्की में फेसबुक पर राष्ट्रपति का कार्टून लाइक करने पर कोर्ट ने पत्रकार याशर एल्मा को 23 महीने की सशर्त सजा सुनाते हुए टिप्पणी को राष्ट्रपति का अपमान करार दिया है। कोर्ट ने याशर एल्मा को पहले 28 महीने की कैद की सजा सुनाई। बाद में ऊपरी अदालत में अपील करने पर सजा घटाकर 23 महीने कर दी गई।

याशर एल्मा की वकील दिलबर देमिरेल कोर्ट के इस फैसले को ऊपरी अदालत में चुनौती देंगी। उनका तर्क है कि ‘आलोचना’ और ‘अपमान’ में फर्क होता है। कोर्ट को दोनों का अंतर स्पष्ट करना चाहिए। तुर्की में किसी गैरसरकारी व्यक्ति का अपमान करने पर तीन माह की कैद का प्रावधान है। सरकारी कर्मचारी का अपमान करने पर सजा की अवधि एक वर्ष या उससे अधिक हो सकती है। 

याशर एल्मा ने मीडिया को एक व्यक्तिगत बातचती के दौरान बताया कि उन्होंने तो सिर्फ राष्ट्रपति के बारे में लिखी एक टिप्पणी को पढ़कर उसे लाइक कर दिया था। इसके आधा घंटा बाद उन्होंने अपना ’लाइक’ हटा भी लिया था। इसी दौरान उनके पास पुलिस टीम पहुंच गई। भला उन्हें क्या पता था कि फेसबुक पर टिप्पणी लाइक करना भी जुर्म है। 

समाचार अंग्रेजी में पढ़ें- 

Journalist sentenced to jail for sharing Facebook post ‘insulting’ Erdoğan

A local journalist in the southeastern Turkish province of Gaziantep was handed a suspended prison sentence for sharing on Facebook another user’s post that the court said insulted President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Journalist Yaşar Elma was convicted of “insulting a public official” for the post he shared on his Facebook page on July 16, 2014 and given a suspended sentence to serve one year and 11 months in prison. A lawyer for Erdoğan, who was still the prime minister at that time, was a co-plaintiff in the case. The Gaziantep court also ordered Elma to pay the lawyer’s TL 1,500 (approximately $580) fee.

Elma’s lawyer, Dilber Demirel, said she will appeal the ruling, insisting that the political figures should tolerate heavy criticism and that her client exercised his freedom of speech. Demirel also complained that the verdict opens the way for criminalizing the sharing of a post on social media platforms. “This means, you may be punished for sharing someone else’s opinions,” she was quoted as saying by private news agency Doğan.

Elma said he was not aware that sharing another user’s post was a crime. He also said he had deleted the post half an hours after he shared it on his Facebook page but was still called by the police after a while to give a testimony about the post.

It was not clear whether the user who originally published the post has also been prosecuted.

Scores of people, including journalists, students, activists and even a former Miss Turkey, have been prosecuted for “insulting” Erdoğan. Most cases have been launched under a law that bans “insulting the president” but several people have also faced the court on lesser charges of “insulting a public official” for statements that were made before he became the president in August 2014. 

According to a recent tally by opposition daily Sözcü, President Erdoğan has filed complaints on charges of “insulting” him against a total of 236 people since he was elected president in the election held on Aug. 10, 2014.(Cihan/Today’s Zaman)

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