Cyprus Mail

Sener Levent acquitted in ‘insulting’ Erdogan case

Turkish Cypriot journalist and editor Sener Levent was acquitted in northern Nicosia on Wednesday of “insulting a foreign statesman” and “driving a wedge between the TRNC and Turkey”.

The case arose after a cartoon was published in Levent’s newspaper, then called Afrika, on December 21, 2017, showing a Greek figure urinating on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Levent had been sentenced in absentia to a year in prison in Ankara for the same cartoon but was adjudged to be innocent by the Turkish Cypriot court.

Following the decision, Levent’s lawyer Tacan Reynar said the court’s decision was not unanimous, but that the majority of the panel of the judges had found him innocent.

“This decision showed we can maintain our faith in holding on and living in this country. We really saw that if we fight shoulder to shoulder, we can achieve this,” he added.

He added that as a result of the decision, subsequent cases regarding the cartoon had been drawn by the north’s Chief of public prosecutions.

Levent described the decision as “historic” and “extraordinary”, and highlighted the fact that the court in northern Nicosia was the opposite of that in Ankara.


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