Cyprus Mail

Authorities in the north slammed for arrest over photo caption

Authorities in the north are under fire following the arrest of a Turkish Cypriot cameraman was after he posted a picture of women in Islamic dress on his social media account with a comment calling it ‘a spectacle’.

Hasan Cagda, who according to media reports works for Kibris TV, was arrested and detained for four hours on Saturday, after a complaint was filed against him.

Cagda, had reportedly posted on his Facebook profile a photo he had taken of a three-member family walking on the street in Kioneli in the Nicosia district, whereby the mother and daughter were dressed in Islamic attire, under the comment “spectacle in the north’.

According to Yeni Duzen online, he was called in at the local police station last Saturday afternoon where he was placed in a holding cell after being informed that someone had filed a complaint against him concerning the photograph. He was reportedly released some four hours later and appeared in court on Monday. He was charged, with violation of privacy and defamation.

Cagda’s lawyers said that taking pictures in the public sector did not constitute a crime and that their client had been wrongfully arrested. They said they would file an action for compensation because of this attitude of the police.

Cagda told Yeni Duzen that he too had filed a complaint as the man of the same family had taken a photo of him but that police did not act on his own complaint.

The general-secretary of Turkish Cypriot teachers’ union (KTÖS), Sener Elcil, said that the complainant, a teacher from Turkey had arrived on the island to teach religion and morals in schools.

Elcil, in a written statement, called on ‘education minister’ Cemal Ozyigit, to immediately dismiss “the bigots” who are trying to promote the Saudi -type religion in schools. He also called on the regime to stop being Turkey’s puppet.

He also said wondered whether the presence of this teacher and his family, covered in black, was not a blatant intervention to the principle of modern national education.

The head of Basin Sen, the press workers trade union, Ali Kismir, referred to conditions similar to those in Turkey that create fear for journalists, artists, academics and others who are opposing the regime.

Another group, the “Independent Road” initiative, criticised ‘prime minister’ Tufan Erhurman, arguing that the police were under his authority but also that he had prepared the ‘legislation’ that was the tool for the arrest of Cagda.

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