Turkish police launch raids to detain Islamic figure, followers

Turkish police officers escort televangelist and leader of a sect Adnan Oktar, center, on Wednesday, July 11 after his arrest on fraud charges. (Dogan News Agency / AFP)
Updated 11 July 2018
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Turkish police launch raids to detain Islamic figure, followers

ISTANBUL: Turkish police launched an operation on Wednesday to detain 235 people associated with Muslim author and televangelist Adnan Oktar over accusations including forming a criminal gang, fraud and sexual abuse, Istanbul police headquarters said.
It said in a statement the raids were carried out by its financial crimes section in an operation state-run Anadolu news agency described as having been spread across five provinces and that searches of properties were continuing.
Police launched one raid in the early hours on Oktar’s house at Cengelkoy on the Asian side of Istanbul and detained him and his guards, the Sabah newspaper said.
In February, Turkey's television watchdog suspended a television program hosted by Oktar that blended theological discussion and dancing, saying it violated gender equality and women's rights.
Oktar hosts talk show program on his television channel, A9, on which he has discussed Islamic values and sometimes danced with young women he calls “kittens” and sang with young men, his “lions”.
In 2006, Oktar wrote the Atlas of Creation under his pen-name Harun Yahya, arguing that Darwin's theory of evolution is at the root of global terrorism. He has written more than 300 books, translated into 73 languages, his channel says on its website.


Netanyahu’s adviser accused of sexual assault resigns

Updated 26 min 43 sec ago
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Netanyahu’s adviser accused of sexual assault resigns

  • David Keyes, Netanyahu’s spokesman with the foreign press, formally resigned on Wednesday
  • Keyes issued a statement saying he had “decided to pursue new opportunities in the private sector”

JERUSALEM: An adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has tendered his resignation following allegations of sexual assault.
David Keyes, Netanyahu’s spokesman with the foreign press, formally resigned on Wednesday, nearly three months after taking a leave of absence after he was accused of sexual assault by at least a dozen women.
Keyes issued a statement saying he had “decided to pursue new opportunities in the private sector.”
Keyes has denied the assault accusations, saying all were “deeply misleading and many of them are categorically false.”
Israel’s Civil Service Commission closed an investigation into the allegations last month without taking any disciplinary action against Keyes.
Netanyahu thanked Keyes in a statement “for his great contribution to Israel’s information effort.”