Today, Wednesday, an Istanbul court sentenced the opposition mayor of Greater Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu, to a prison term of two years, seven months and 15 days, in addition to a ban on political activities.
Today, Wednesday, at the headquarters of the Seventh Criminal Court of First Instance on the Asian side of the Turkish city of Istanbul, a new session in the court hearings of the dissident Mayor of Greater Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu, began.
Imamoglu is being tried on charges of “insulting officials” who are the head and members of Turkey’s High Electoral Commission based on statements he made after the 2019 elections.
Imamoglu questioned the integrity of the High Electoral Commission on March 31, 2019, accusing the members of this Electoral Commission of “stupidity”.
During the previous/third court session, which took place on November 11, the Istanbul Prosecutor demanded the de facto imprisonment of Istanbul Mayor Imamoglu (from: year, 3 months and 15 days / at least .. and up to 4 years and a month / maximum).
Imamoglu enjoys broad solidarity from various supporters of the Turkish opposition, especially the largest opposition party, the Republican People’s Party, to which he belongs.
In the 2019 Turkish local elections, Akram Imamoglu won as the candidate of the opposition coalition (National Alliance, which includes the Republican People’s Party, the largest opposition party, and the nationalist Good Party) in the Greater Istanbul City Hall. candidate from the ruling party coalition at that time, Benali Yildirim, and since then the dispute between the two parties has not stopped.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, head of the Republican People’s Party, Turkey’s largest opposition party, said earlier commenting on Imamoğlu’s trial: “Where there is no justice, there are no human rights or democracy, when you order judges to rule as you please, not according to whatever you want.” For their conscience, you destroy justice. from him, and they change judges, and bring judges loyal to them to make decisions.. We tell them that decisions should be made according to the law, and not political decisions according to the Instructions of the Presidential Palace.
While the ruling coalition and official authorities say that Akram Imamoglu’s statements regarding the president and members of the High Electoral Commission are erroneous, and the integrity of the commission, acting independently in monitoring the elections, is being questioned.
According to the decision and Turkish legislation, if the sentence against Imamoglu is confirmed, he will be dismissed from the post of mayor, membership in the opposition Republican People’s Party, and he will also be banned from political activities in Turkey in connection with the sentence. against him for more than two years, which seems more serious, given that many observers in Turkey believe that Imamoglu wants to run for the presidency of Turkey in the future.
The mayor of Greater Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu, and the opposition that supports him and rejects today’s decision, may appeal the decision.
Based on the decision on the appeal, a decision will be applied (either accept the appeal and set aside/or change the sentence, or confirm it and apply the decision rendered today).
Ekrem Imamoglu called his supporters to a large mass rally at 4pm in front of the headquarters of the Greater Istanbul Municipality in the Fatih district of central Istanbul to await the court’s decision on the charges against him.