Turkish citizen Itir Esen was crowned Miss Turkey 2017 in September, but it was only a matter of weeks before the title was stripped from her, after pageant organisers were alerted to an “unacceptable tweet” she had posted in July.
Now, the 18-year-old faces “up to one year jail”, SBS reports, for “publicly humiliating a segment of the society.”
Her tweet, which was sent on the first anniversary of the July 15, 2016 failed coup and which Esen has since said was written “carelessly”, read as follows:
“I am having my period this morning to celebrate the July 15 martyrs’ day. I am celebrating the day by bleeding on behalf of our martyrs’ blood.”
Esen has since deleted the tweet and deactivated her Twitter account.
Approximately 250 people (mostly unarmed civilians) were killed and 1000 injured during the coup, according to Reuters, prompting a government crackdown in which more than 150,000 state employees were suspended or fired and more than 50,000 jailed before trial.
Turkish prosecutors are now seeking jail time for Esen on charges of “publicly denigrating some part of society based on their class, race, religion, sect, gender or regional differences,” private news agency Dogan reports.