Turkish singer gets jail for insulting Erdogan

Turkish singer gets jail for insulting Erdogan
Zuhal Olcay
Updated 24 March 2018

Turkish singer gets jail for insulting Erdogan

Turkish singer gets jail for insulting Erdogan

ANKARA: A famous Turkish singer and actress has been sentenced to 10 months in prison for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during a performance in 2016, the Hurriyet newspaper said on Thursday. Singer Zuhal Olcay was accused of changing the lyrics of one of her songs by substituting Erdogan’s name into it and making an insulting hand gesture while singing, Hurriyet said. Video from the performance showed Olcay changing her song’s lyrics to read “Recep Tayyip Erdogan, it’s all empty, it’s all a lie, life will end one day and you’ll say ‘I had a dream’,” Hurriyet said. In her testimony, Olcay rejected the accusations, saying she had used Erdogan’s name because it fit the rhyme scheme and had no “ulterior or insulting motive.” She said the hand gesture was aimed at an audience member. Olcay was previously fined 10,620 lira ($2,708) for “insulting a public servant” in 2010, according to the state-run Anadolu agency. Insulting the president is a crime punishable by up to four years in prison in Turkey.