Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is not welcome back in his native Turkey because of his criticism of the Recep Tayyip Erdogan administration's increasing corruption and democratic erosion and support for Fetullah Gülen's anti-Erdogan movement. That led to the revocation of his citizenship and the arrest of his father Mehmet, whom Erdogan accused of being a member of a terrorist group.
Kanter received some wonderful news on Friday though. Mehmet has been released from prison due to the "pressure" that has been placed on the Erdogan regime.
Kanter has been a frequent target of criticism and persecution from the Erdogan administration. His justified fears of retaliation led to him skipping out on a trip to London when he was on the New York Knicks. Turkey has tried to request that Interpol put out a warrant for his arrest, but the request has not been granted.
The veteran big man has received scathing rebukes from his former country and former NBA star Hedo Turkoglu, the current president of the Turkish Basketball Association. Nonetheless, Kanter urged his followers on Twitter to fight for freedom, democracy, and human rights across the globe.
Any time political prisoners arrested without cause are freed, it's a major victory. Kanter, however, knows that his father getting released does not mean the end of his fight against the corrupt Erdogan power structure.