Fazil Say
Photo: Marco Borggreve

The court case regarding the claim of blasphemous behavior and language brought against Fazil Say, the renowned Turkish composer and pianist, by the 19th Criminal Court of Istanbul on the charge of having shared the quatrain of Omer Hayyam on his Twitter account has ended with the tribunal’s decision to charge him with 10 months of imprisonment, but to grant him a retrieve.

Regarding the decision, Fazil Say has stated: “I am sorry for the decision of the Court on behalf of both myself and my country. I am extremely disappointed with the restrictions on freedom of thought and expression. The fact that I have been charged with punishment despite being totally innocent is alarming not only on a personal level but in terms of freedom of expression and beliefs in Turkey.”

The sentence has been severely criticized by politicians outside Turkey.

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