Video: 'Turkish Charlie Hebdo' vows to carry on despite threats

2 min

The Turkish satirical magazine Leman is considered a sister publication to Charlie Hebdo. Faced with similar threats from extremists, Leman also refuses to be intimidated into self-censorship.


"The more threats and insults we receive, the more we tell ourselves that we did a good job," says one Leman journalist.

Such humour has come under scrutiny by the government, and cartoonist Sefar Salvi has paid the price for defending it. Salvi has been dragged into court twice by lawyers for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Nevertheless, he says, Erdogan remains his main source of inspiration.

"He gives us a lot of material, on all kinds of topics. In all of Erdogan's speeches there is always a contradiction, and these contradictions feed the caricature," Salvi says.

Trials aimed at journalists are common in Turkey, and defenders of free speech have criticised the presence of the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu at last week's unity march in Paris.

"It's good that the PM said that he was going to the Paris march in the name of fighting terrorism. If he had said that he was there for the freedom of expression, it would've been criticised much more."

The Turkish caricaturists vow that their pencils were not broken but rather merely sharpened by the recent attacks in Paris, and promise to keep the spirit of Charlie Hebdo alive here in Turkey.

Click on the player above to watch report.


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