- Sagiv Jehezkel, an Israeli soccer player who currently plays for the Turkish team Antalyaspor, has left Turkey after being detained for allegedly 'inciting the public to hatred and hostility' after displaying a message on his armband that said, '100 Days 7.10' alongside a Star of David, apparently referencing the hostages taken by Hamas during its Oct. 7 attack.1
- Jehezkel has denied the accusations, and Turkish Justice Minister Yilmaz Tunc said an investigation had been opened into Sunday's incident.2
- While Turkish public media originally reported that Jehezkel would be deported after he gave his testimony pending an investigation, a Turkish source then stated that he left of his own volition, adding, 'he isn't being deported.'3
- The Antalyaspor soccer club originally posted images of Jehezkel's celebration after he scored a goal but deleted them soon after facing backlash. The team has also suspended the Israeli, with its president, Sinan Boztepe, saying the team will end his contract — a decision that will reportedly see the team lose more than $1M.4
- Sunday marked 100 days since Hamas attacked Israel, which killed about 1.2K people, largely civilians. Since then, 240 Israeli hostages have been taken, around 132 of which are still being held captive. Meanwhile, Israel has since killed more than 23K people in Gaza, according to its Hamas-run health ministry.2
- Narrative A, as provided by The Jerusalem Post. Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has always campaigned on antisemitism to gain popularity. If the Turkish head of state only cared about incitement of hatred, he wouldn't have arrested Jehezkel, whose bandage was about freeing hostages, not supporting the war. Erdoğan's government is fueled by public hatred of Israel — something he believes will win local elections and help him rise to the top.
- Narrative B, as provided by Daily Sabah. This incident has been blown way out of proportion. Jehezkel was not arrested for antisemitic reasons but rather due to suspected incitement of hatred. While some may see his message as positive, many others in Turkey see it as a defense of Israel's massacre of the Palestinian people in Gaza. Police briefly detained him for questioning before the soccer player left the country on his own accord. Those are the facts, and nothing more.