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Thunder’s Enes Kanter Tweets that Turkish Officials Arrested His Father

Thunder’s Enes Kanter Tweets that Turkish Officials Arrested His Father

Turkey will stop at nothing to get Kanter.

It appears Turkey will do anything to get its hands on Oklahoma City Thunder’s Enes Kanter, an outspoken critic of Dictator President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

In May, Turkey canceled Kanter’s passport when he landed in Romania, but luckily he made it back to the states. Then the country issued an arrest warrant for Kanter, which stated he belongs to a “terror group” that supports preacher Fetullah Gulen. You know, the preacher that Erdogan blames for everything.

Now Turkey has now taken aim at Kanter’s family even though the family publicly disowned Kanter last summer.

Turkey’s official news agency Andalou confirmed the arrest:

Within the scope of the investigation carried out by the Chief Public Prosecutor of Tekirdag, Dr. Mehmet Kanter was arrested in his home in Kadikoy.

It was learned that Kanter would be sent to Tekirdağ after the safe operations.

As I mentioned above, Turkey has Enes Kanter under investigation as a part of its investigation into the supposed Fehtullah Terrorist Organization (FETO). That’s the name officials gave to the followers of Gulen, who resides in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania.

The Daily Sabah reported last month:

An article by Nazif Karaman says Prosecutor Can Tuncay from the Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office asked a court to approve an arrest warrant for Kanter who debuted in the NBA in 2011. The court approved the request in the investigation of Kanter on charges of “being a member of a terrorist organization.”

The prosecutor cites that Kanter has been a user of Bylock, an encrypted messaging app exclusively used for correspondence between FETÖ members. Kanter is already known for his tweets praising FETÖ and its leaders and after his father in Turkey disowned him, he published a bizarre letter heaping praise on Fetullah Gülen, signed with the name “Enes Gülen.” He is accused of maintaining close contacts with FETÖ’s senior figures and the group’s other members. He has been summoned to testify in previous investigations but Kanter did not return to Turkey since FETÖ openly started a campaign to seize power in 2013.

The prosecutor’s office also sought an international red notice from Interpol. Like the case with other FETÖ and terror suspects, Kanter’s passport was canceled and this led to a rejection to his entry to Romania where he was on a promotional tour earlier this week.

Due to Kanter’s support of Gulen, his family went on the record to disown him. His father lamented his son’s actions in a letter: “I apologize to the Turkish people and the president for having such a son.” The Daily Sabah continued:

Following the release of the letter, Daily Sabah reached out to Mehmet Kanter, who told Daily Sabah that he has been quite disturbed by his son’s behavior and insulting tweets directed at President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Stressing that he has been educating students for almost 30 years, Kanter said: “His statements and behavior trouble our family. I told Enes that we would disown him should he not change his course. He did not care.”

The elder Kanter said he has not been able to communicate with Enes since 2015. “I would not have taken Enes to the U.S. for the basketball camp where his talent was discovered had I known that it would come to this point,” he said.

Kanter spoke of his detainment and the effects his family has felt since he has started to speak out against Erdogan. From CNN:

“It was of course scary,” he said May 22. “It was scary because there was a chance they might send me back to Turkey. If they sent me back to Turkey, probably you guys would hear a word from me the second day. It would have definitely gotten really ugly.”

Enes Kanter told reporters that he isn’t able to communicate with his parents, saying they could be put in jail. He also said his family “can’t even go out to eat.”

“My brother told me that my dad goes to the supermarket and they spit on his face,” he said last month.


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Kanter has been accepted in the OKC area – there have been many articles about him, not only in the sports section but in the living/religious section of the newspaper. He does good things and he is funny. The videos that Kanter and Adams did about the Thunder and Westbrook are great.

This is an example of a political refugee and based on his NBA pay, he won’t be a burden on the country.