TURKISH politician faces 17 years over tweets............

ISTANBUL : Hundreds gathered at Istanbul's main court last Friday to support an opposition politician who faces 17 years in prison for a series of tweets criticizing the government.

Canan Kaftancioglu, who heads the secular Republican Peoples Party's [CHP] Istanbul branch, is accused of ''insulting'' President Recep Erdogan and the Turkish state in tweets posted between 2012 and 2017.

She played a key role in the victory of newly elected Istanbul mayor Ekrem Immoglu this week - the first time the CHP has run the city for 25 years.

Imamoglu told reporters that case against Kaftancioglu was one of ''political interference.''

''It is an attempt to restrict rights and freedoms. I will always stand by her,'' he said.

Supporters outside the court chanted : ''Down with Fascism'' and held signs reading. ''We are thirsty for justice''.

Kaftanciolu's tweets include a condemnation of Erdogan and criticism of the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during the mas ''Gezi Park'' protests of 2013. [AFP]


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