Seems like Turkey is certainly working hard to become that useful model for new Arab regimes in the region. Not satisfied with simply being listed as one of the world’s worst religious freedom offenders, it appears that Turkey also wants to be known as one of the worst freedom offenders, period. Now, if only I could figure out why the Islamist Prime Minister of Turkey has apparently become Barack Obama’s favourite foreign leader …
According to The Associated Press, the court in Istanbul voted to approve an indictment against Fazil Say, who has played piano with the New York Philharmonic, Berlin Symphony Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic, National Orchestra of France and Tokyo Symphony.
The 42-year-old Say faces charges of inciting hatred and public enmity, and insulting ‘religious values.’ He allegedly mocked Islamic beliefs about paradise in April.
Say’s lawyer, Meltem Akyol, told AP the pianist has denied the charges. The trial will be held on Oct. 18, she said.
‘We certainly do not accept the charges,’ Akyol said. ‘He has stated in his initial testimony during the probe that he had no intention to humiliate any religion. He was basically criticizing those who are exploiting religion for profit.’
Akyol said Say’s tweets and retweets on social media cannot be considered as public remarks because only people who follow him can see them.
In one tweet cited in the indictment, Say said, ‘What if there is raki (traditional anisette drink) in paradise but not in hell, while there is Chivas Regal (scotch) in hell and not in paradise? What will happen then? This is the most important question!!’” Read more. <Gasp! Shock!> Oh the humanity …
Flashback: Turkey Still Receives Cordial Treatment From Obama Administration Even While Declaring It Is Now ‘Too Late’ For Mediation With Israel – “As Turkey’s leaders intensify efforts to isolate Israel internationally, the cordial treatment they are receiving from the Obama administration this week will add to concerns some Americans have about the strength of its support for Israel… While Israeli leaders have expressed a desire to heal the rift between the one-time allies, Turkey imposed sanctions on Jerusalem and declared its intention to use all international forums to make its views on Israel known.” Read more.