‘Shame on humanity’: Islam school joke puts pop star in custody

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“Shame on Humanity”
Islam school joke puts pop star in custody

Due to her skimpy outfits, Turkish singer Gülsen repeatedly aroused the ire of the media guards. Authorities are now arresting the musician for a stage prank. Justice accuses the 46-year-old of “inciting hatred”.

A famous Turkish pop singer has been remanded in custody after making jokes about Islamic schools. Singer Gülsen Bayraktar Colakoglu, 46, who is known in Turkey by the stage name Gülsen, was arrested at her home in Istanbul and brought before the magistrate on Thursday. The judge ordered her to be kept in custody pending the conclusion of the “hate speech” investigation.

On stage, Gülsen joked about the religious Imam Hatip schools, jokingly telling a colleague that his “perversion” was due to his schooling at an Imam Hatip school. A video of the performance spread in online networks, sparking outrage among President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist conservative party. AKP spokesman Ömer Celik spoke of a “hate crime and a disgrace to humanity”.

Before her arrest, Gülsen was the online networking reported to speak. She joked with colleagues with whom she has worked for years, according to the singer. “I am sorry that my words have given meaning to malicious people who want to divide our country,” she added. She didn’t mean to offend or belittle anyone.

Gülsens lawyer Emek Emre announced that he would appeal against the singer’s arrest and called for her immediate release. “Our client committed no crime,” he told reporters.

Gülsen has released ten albums in her career so far. Since she changed her image in 2004, she has performed at concerts and in music videos, usually dressed lightly. As a result, she has repeatedly had problems with the Turkish media regulator in the past.

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