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Global Affairs concerned by reports Calgary imam sentenced to prison in Turkey


CALGARY — Global Affairs Canada says it is concerned by reports in Turkey that a Calgary imam has been sentenced to prison there.

A report on the website of news outlet Haberturk says Canadian Davud Hanci has been handed a 15-year sentence.

Hanci, who has dual citizenship, was detained in Turkey two years ago on allegations he was connected with an attempted coup.

His family has said he is a peaceful man who had nothing to do with the violence in 2016.

Relatives have said Hanci was visiting the city of Trabzon, on the coast of the Black Sea, to visit his sick father at the time.

Global Affairs spokesman John Babcock says officials are in contact with him.

Babcock says consular officials have also been in contact with local authorities to gather information and are assisting Hanci’s family. He says no other information can be released for privacy reasons.

Following the failed coup on July 15, 2016, the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan instituted a state of emergency that ended this month. During that time, Turkey has arrested more than 75,000 people for alleged links to Fethullah Gulen, a U.S.-based cleric whom Ankara blames for the attempted government overthrow.


The Canadian Press