Sevan Nisanyan, a Turkish citizen of Armenian origin born in 1956, is without doubt one of the most colorful personalities in Turkish intellectual life. In the book Wrong Republic, he wrote about questioning the “Ataturk taboo” in Turkey, arousing the anger of secular-nationalist Turks. He outraged religious circles with his criticism of Muslim beliefs, has infuriated feminists and leftists and never hesitates to speak bluntly about the Armenian genocide.
Nisanyan is now in the first month of a two-year prison term in Torbali, Izmir province. Ostensibly, Nisanyan is in prison not for his contrarian views or identity, but because of "construction infractions." Is this really the case? Why did only Nisanyan end up in jail for building in an enviroment of rampant illegal construction? Is his jail term really to punish his contrarian views?