An Istanbul court has rejected an appeal against the arrest of journalist Sedef Kabaş, who was jailed on the weekend over a charge of “insulting” President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
On Jan. 24, lawyer Uğur Poyraz demanded Kabaş's release, citing the European Convention of Human Rights, the European Court of Human Rights' (ECHR) judgments and the Turkish Constitution, Demirören news agency reported on Jan. 26.
The Istanbul 28th Penal Court of First Instance rejected the lawyer's appeal, arguing that there was “strong suspicion that the crime was committed explicitly in an aggravated form.” The court also said that Kabaş had stood trial over “a similar charge” previously.
Kabaş was jailed pending trial on Jan. 22. The alleged insult against Erdoğan was in the form of a palace-related proverb that Kabaş expressed both on television channel TELE1 and on her Twitter account.
“An ox might find his way into the palace but it doesn’t make him a king. It does, however, turn the palace into a barn,” Kabataş said on live TV and later in a tweet.
In her defense later, Kabaş denied the charges and said that her remarks constituted as a proverb.