Inmates punished for cartoon insulting Erdoğan in prison publication

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Six inmates in a prison in the northwestern province of Bolu have been given 10 days of solitary confinement as punishment for allegedly insulting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in a cartoon they drew for a monthly in-prison magazine, the Bianet news website reported on Wednesday.

One of the inmates, Emrah Yayla, sent a letter to Bianet to explain the incident. Yayla wrote that in addition to him, five other prisoners were put in solitary confinement for a cartoon they drew for the Ayvaz monthly culture and arts magazine they put together in prison. He did not specify which of the prisoners drew the cartoon.

Yayla said the petitions they wrote demanding cancellation of the punishment have not been processed by the prison administration.

Hundreds of people in Turkey, even including high school students, face charges of insulting President Erdoğan. The slightest criticism is considered insult, and there has been a rise in the number of cases in which people inform on others claiming that they insulted the president, the government or government officials.

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