Turkey: Journalist receives jail sentence for ‘liking Erdoğan insult’ on Facebook

One does not insult the Sultan.

A journalist from a local daily in southeastern Turkey has received a suspended prison sentence for “liking” a remark criticising President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Facebook, which the court deemed as an “insult.”

The 19th Criminal Court of First Instance in the Gaziantep province convicted Yaşar Elma on charges of “insulting a public servant” in the second hearing of the trial on April 4, in which Erdoğan’s lawyer also attended.

The court originally ruled to send Elma to prison for 28 months, but decreased the sentence to 23 months before suspending it.

“I had just used the ‘like’ feature of Facebook when I saw a comment on Mr. President one day. I deleted it after half an hour, but the police came up and the court convicted me in the second hearing of the trial,” Elma said in an interview to the Doğan News Agency, noting that he “did not know that liking a comment was a crime”…