Journalist suffers threatening language by the police after exposing inadequate state care of 12-year-old girl
Police in Istanbul have launched an investigation into journalist Hale Gonultas, using threatening language over her story about a 12-year-old girl who was forced to work in nightclubs while living under state supervision.
Gonultas said two police officers came to her home and said she had defamed one of her colleagues and ordered her to go to the police station to testify after a police officer identified as E.Y. filed criminal charges against the journalist for defaming him.
In her article, Gonultas told the story of Didem, who was taken to a state facility in the western Turkish province of Manisa after being raped by two men in 2020 when she was 12 years old.
In his complaint, E.Y. said Gonultas relied only on Didem's mother's testimony in the article and that the story mentioned him in connection with the abuse allegations, although Gonultas used only the initial "E." when referring to a police officer.
E.Y. also said that the story was aimed at wearing down state institutions.
Gonultas defended herself by saying she never mentioned a person's name in the article.
"It is the complainant's own problem that he feels offended by the story," she said.