TURKISH PRESS REVIEW DEC 25

Turkish dailies focus mainly on a former police chief's conviction on terrorism charges, two mafia-style killings in Istanbul, the arrest of a high-school student for allegedly insulting the president and a Besiktas footballer's fair play for stopping a referee from sending off a rival.

TURKISH PRESS REVIEW DEC 25
The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

Most dailies on Thursday gave over their front pages to Hanefi Avci, a former police chief who has appealed his conviction for assisting a terrorist organization.

"They did not let me down," was HURRIYET’s headline, quoting a sarcastic Avci as his appeal was rejected and his more than five-year sentence was upheld.

Avci blamed the purported “parallel structure” in the judiciary, linked to a U.S.-based cleric, Fethullah Gulen, and claims a book he wrote in 2010 – in which he criticizes an organization in the police department affiliated with the Gulen movement – paved the way for his imprisonment.

According to AKSAM, Avci said he was expecting the decision, accusing the Supreme Court of Appeal's members of being affiliated with the Gulen movement.

In other news, a 16-year-old high-school student in the central province of Konya will be tried over apparently insulting the Turkish president.

HURRIYET says the youngster, identified only by the initials M.E.A., could be sentenced to between one and four years in jail if convicted.

"From school to prison," ran HABERTURK's headline. The boy was taken into custody by police from school as he made a speech in a commemoration of a Turkish soldier, widely known as Kubilay, who died in 1930 during a rally calling for the restoration of the Sharia against the secularist policies of the Turkish republic.

Meanwhile, SABAH headlines a victory claim by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who says the fight against the parallel structure has been successful.

"Turkey won the war against parallels," vowed Erdogan during a science awards ceremony in Ankara on Wednesday. Erdogan also slammed an alleged network within the Turkish science and research institution, TUBITAK, accusing it of wiretapping senior officials' secret phones – themselves developed by the institution.

VATAN focused on Erdogan's speech and the ongoing discussion over proposed Ottoman Turkish language classes in Turkish high schools. Erdogan claimed one could better study philosophy with Ottoman Turkish rather than a modern language.

He also criticized the alphabet revolution in the early Turkish republic, saying: "We went to bed and the next day that language was gone."

In Istanbul, three people were murdered in two suspected gangland hits; VATAN’s headline was: "Same day, two executions."

Vedat Sahin, brother of a jailed organized crime leader, was shot dead with an AK-47 in one of the city's top-class neighborhoods on Wednesday night. His aide also was killed in the hail of bullets.

In another mafia-style shooting, a businessman who had previously been sentenced in the Netherlands for drug trafficking, was shot dead in broad daylight. Ali Ekber Akgun died after stopping at traffic lights in his Bentley near the Bosporus Strait. His wife witnessed the killing as she was driving in the car behind him.

"Feud with Kalashnikovs," says YENI SAFAK, reporting that the killers fired from a passing car.

In sports, a Ziraat Turkish Cup group stage game between Besiktas and Adana Demirspor made the front pages not just because the underdogs beat the Istanbul giants 2-1 but for a gentle move by the Black Eagles' midfielder, Veli Kavlak.

Besiktas player Veli stopped the referee from sending a rival player off, claiming that the 21st minute red card was too harsh.

HURRIYET said: "Turkey applauds Veli," while STAR remarked: "Besiktas lost, fair play won

Güncelleme Tarihi: 25 Aralık 2014, 14:15
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