Yusuf Kılıç, an imam in the Aegean İzmir province, stated that he received a call from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP)'s Buca district organization requesting him to gather people for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's rally in the province on April 29. He said that an investigation was opened against him because he refused this request.
Kılıç on May 5 stated that he filed a criminal complaint against the threats he has been receiving since then, according to ANKA news agency.
"I have worn the imam’s robe so that people would not be servants to people. Now, I am under investigation,” Kılıç said, adding that his mosque’s congregation wanted him to step back from his initial statement.
The imam also said that his labor union is not standing by him and wants him to resign from the union.
Turkey is heading to the presidential and general elections on May 14 in a highly skewed playing ground for the opposition parties. As accrued in the past elections, the AKP has been using state resources and official channels to spread its propaganda while persuading civil servants to join pro-government rallies.