11 months of imprisonment is a sentence to 2 cartoonists from popular Turkish satiric magazine Penguen. Later this sentence was softened to fine.
Both cartoonists Bahadir Baruter and Ozer Aydogan were fined with 7000 Turkish Lira ($2,700). They were accused of insulting the president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a caricature that was published in August 2014.
Newly elected president Erdogan is depicted is pompously welcomed to his new palace by civil servant, but the President’s says sullenly: "There could have been a warmer welcome, you could have at least sacrificed a journalist!". The joke is based on Islamic tradition to sacrifice and animal to any important event, and the party of Erdogan has been regularly criticized for suppressing democracy and the freedom of expression on press.
The cartoonists are also accused of insulting the country’s moral values: one of the civil servants on the picture holding his hands in the form of gesture that is used in Turkey to offend homosexuals, implying that the President is gay.
The caricature of the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the cover of Penguen for which the cartoonists were fined.
The cartoonists in response said they did not imply any such meaning: Aydogan explained that the purpose of the caricature was to point out the problem of the lack of freedom of speech in Turkey: “The magazine would not make such a cheap joke on the cover. The joke on the cover is a metaphor about the victimization of journalists.”
This case with Penguen is not the first and not the only example of confrontation of Erdogan with satiric outlets. While still prime-minister in 2005 Erdogan sued Penguen for presenting him as a range of zoo animals titled "The World of Tayyips". Among recent events were an incident with ex-miss Turkey who now faces detention for the insult of the President in social media and with 13-year-old boy that was questioned by the police for his critical post on Facebook.