27 detained in Turkey over “misinformation and incitement of hatred” charges

27 detained in Turkey over “misinformation and incitement of hatred” charges
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Turkish authorities have detained 27 individuals, including prominent media personalities, in 14 cities

Police have detained 27 social media users, including media personnel, on charges of inciting hatred and spreading misleading information in an operation coordinated across 14 cities in Turkey, interior minister Ali Yerlikaya said on Wednesday.

This move comes as a part of an investigation initiated by the Ankara Public Prosecutor's Office to scrutinize the actions of several media personalities including Batuhan Colak, the General Editor of Aykiri, Suha Cardakli, the editor of Ajans Muhbir, and the owner of Haber Report.

The individuals in question are being investigated for potentially breaching specific provisions of the Turkish Penal Code (Law No. 5237), which encompasses crimes related to public incitement of hatred and hostility, and openly spreading misinformation to the public. The areas where the detentions took place include Ankara, Hatay, Antalya, Samsun, Kahramanmaras, Sakarya, Izmir, Siirt, Sanliurfa, Tokat, Edirne, Bursa, and Istanbul.

Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya commented on the situation via his social media account. He affirmed that the detentions were the result of operations conducted in synchronization by the Police Department in 14 provinces, under the coordination of the General Directorate of Security Cyber Crimes Division and with the support of the Intelligence Directorate and the Security Directorate. The operations targeted social media account managers who were allegedly engaging in spreading hate speech and misinformation openly on the internet and social media platforms.