Murat Alan, the news director of the pro-government conservative Yeni Akit daily, was attacked with baseball bats in front of his house, Gazete Duvar news portal reported on Friday.
Alan, who received injuries to his head and body, was reportedly taken to a hospital for treatment soon after the attack. Four suspects were detained in connection with the attack on Alan.
Fahrettin Altun, Presidency’s Director of Communications, condemned the attack on Alan on his official Twitter account.
“We condemn the attack against Yeni Akit News Director Murat Alan. It cannot
be condoned under any circumstances. We are going to follow up on the issue.
Everyone should know that the attackers will be brought to justice,” Altun said.
The attack came soon after an investigation was launched against Alan after a criminal complaint was filed against him by Turkey’s Defense Ministry.
The ministry filed the complaint after Alan’s remarks during a program on Akit TV on June 1, where he drew an analogy between the Turkish military’s commanding generals and “donkeys.”
Using the analogy, Alan argued that the generals have no other choice but to abide by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“Your generals with epaulets, who did not behave [in the past], now take a stand with Erdogan. They will side with Erdogan whether they like it or not,” Alan said.
The defense ministry condemned the language used in the program in a written statement issued a few days after Alan’s remarks.
“On June 1, one of the participants in a television program used destructive language adding up to defamation. Attempting to insult the commanding generals of the Turkish Armed Forces [TSK], who endeavor to do their duty with graveness and sincerity, before the public, scathes the rights and interests of our noble nation,” the ministry said.
The ministry then filed a complaint against the pro-government news director on Tuesday.
Speaking to the press about the issue, Alan said that his statements during the TV program were in reference to the generals who targeted Erdogan, not the others.