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Turkish daily ordered to pay damages to parliament speaker for caricature

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A Turkish court on Thursday sentenced the Evrensel daily and caricaturist Sefer Selvi to pay TL 10,000 ($1,800) to Parliament Speaker Binali Yıldırım and his son Erkam Yıldırım for attacking them in public with a caricature published in the newspaper.

Selvi’s caricature featured then-Prime Minister Yıldırım and his son’s alleged ties to an offshore company situated in a tax haven that were exposed in 2015 by the Panama Papers, the work of investigative journalists who revealed the corrupt business ties with tax havens of politicians and businesspeople.

Lawyers for the Yıldırım family complained that the caricature depicted Yıldırım and his son as evading taxes and portrayed them as “ridiculous and comical.”

Earlier this week Yıldırım and two of his sons filed a criminal complaint against journalist Pelin Ünker from the Cumhuriyet daily for allegedly “insulting a public official” with her reporting on passages concerning Yıldırım in the Paradise Papers.

Ünker had previously been the subject of a lawsuit for damages filed by the Yıldırım family for her reporting.

Binali Yıldırım (above) says: “When I was entering to politics, I told my children not to do business with the public sector”
His son says: “We are staying away from state institutions, as our father told us.” (as tax office sign is shown behind him.)
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