Journalist and independent lawmaker Ahmet Şık on Feb. 5 became the subject of a criminal investigation on charges of "encouraging criminal behavior" for a speech he gave in support of the protests against the president's appointment of a rector to Boğaziçi University.
The Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor's Office accused Şık of explicitly encouraging criminal activity after various media reports suggested that the deputy had urged people "to take to the streets since the government will not leave with an election."
During a demonstration on Feb. 4, Şık slammed the government with regards to its stance on Boğaziçi University protests and called for the release of detained students.
"You can't fight a mob with the law, you can't battle with their law. In the name of global legal norms, everyone should carry out their civic duty and shoulder this fight," Şık said.
Opposition leaders have been voicing solidarity with the protests against the violation of the democratic process of rectorial elections in Boğaziçi University.
Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu however was criticized for addressing the students' parents in his message of support.
"Nobody should take Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu's parent-teacher conference. This is not a burden that our young friends can shoulder alone. We have to give them a hand, and we will lift this boulder together. A boulder called the palace regime," Şık said in his speech.
"To those who proved me right by opening an investigation upon orders: The barricade closes the road, but opens the path," Şık said in a tweet on Feb. 5, sharing a report of the investigation on social media.
Aldıkları talimatın gereğini yaparak soruşturma başlatarak dediklerimi haklı çıkaranlara; “Barikat sokağı kapatır ama yolu açar.” https://t.co/UFl6j13iMY— ahmet şık (@sahmetsahmet) February 5, 2021
The investigation into Şık, a former member of pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), came hours after members of the HDP were battered and detained during the demonstration in Istanbul's Kadıköy district.