New York Knicks’ Enes Kanter has failed to appear at Oslo Freedom Forum in Norway where he was scheduled to speak about the ongoing crackdown against critical voices back in his home country, Turkey.
“I want to be there with you at Oslo Freedom Forum but the Turkish regime cancelled my passport in retaliation to my criticism of Erdogan’s destruction of Turkish democracy and the gross human rights violations under his rule,” Kanter said in a video recording screened on the sidelines of the event on May 28-29.
— Enes Kanter (@Enes_Kanter) June 4, 2018
“What happened with Enes is what was happening with other speakers in the past. We invite people to come but their governments do not really want them to say. In some occasions, we have some people from China who wanted to speak on the stage and they were told and it was made very clear: ‘Your family will suffer for this’,” Oslo Freedom Forum’s founder Thor Halvorssen told the audience before the screening.
An outspoken critic of Erdogan and a supporter of the Hizmet movement, Kanter had his passport briefly seized by Romanian police upon a request from the Turkish government last year. Once he landed in the US, Kanter revealed that Turkish government had tried to catch him also in Indonesia.
Turkish government blames the Gulen movement for the failed coup attempt of 2016 while the latter denies involvement.
Currently, Kanter has an outstanding arrest warrant and his Twitter account is banned in Turkey.