Enes Kanter Freedom reveals Turkish government put $500K bounty on his head, may sue NBA

Former NBA heart Enes Kanter Freedom has had a bounty put out on him by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government value as much as 10 million Turkish lira, or about $500,000, for data resulting in his seize.

Freedom is on the nation’s 2023 most-wanted terrorists record as he has been famously outspoken relating to Turkey’s human rights abuses by means of Erdogan’s government. He advised the New York Post that he discovered in regards to the bounty every week in the past.

“Before the bounty, Turkish intelligence was after the folks on the record, however now everyone seems to be after them as a result of they need the cash,” Freedom advised the Post.

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Enes Kanter Freedom, whose human rights advocacy has ruffled feathers, hopes to bend UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet’s ear about her China go to.
(FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP through Getty Images)

On high of that, Freedom says he’s trying into suing the NBA, which he says has blackballed him following his protests in opposition to China.

“I’m ready for the suitable time,” he stated.

Freedom hasn’t held again his ideas on Erdogan all through his NBA profession, calling him a “dictator,” and even going as far to say he is the “Hitler of our century.”

Freedom is on the terrorist record together with actual terrorists, others who’ve spoken out about Erdogan and his government, and a number of journalists. Just this previous 12 months, the variety of journalists which were put in jail doubled.

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“Because of my platform, each time I say one thing, it goes in every single place, and the Turkish government hates that,” Freedom advised the Post. “They’re actually sick of it, and so they stated, ‘Enough is sufficient,’ and doing no matter they will to close me up.”

Freedom, 30, most not too long ago performed 35 video games with the Boston Celtics final season on their run to the NBA Finals, the place they misplaced to the Golden State Warriors. But Kanter is not on a workforce now, and he suspects it is attributable to his criticism of President Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party.

The NBA has a powerful relationship with China, the place basketball is a particularly widespread sport. Freedom additionally stated issues about Nike attributable to their manufacturing offers with China, and the sports activities model has giant ties with the league as effectively.

LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Enes Kanter #00 of the New York Knicks exchange words in the first half at Madison Square Garden on November 13, 2017 in New York City.

LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Enes Kanter #00 of the New York Knicks alternate phrases within the first half at Madison Square Garden on November 13, 2017 in New York City.
(Elsa/Getty Images)

Freedom has worn sneakers with messages that embrace “No Beijing 2022,” “Free Tibet” and extra. He stated strain from the NBA was put on him to take them off.

Freedom was traded from the Celtics to the Houston Rockets, however they dropped him rapidly after the transaction.

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“The NBA isn’t going to confess it, however I consider I’m being blackballed,” he advised the Post. “I’ve had many conversations, and everyone seems to be saying the identical factor: ‘Your profession has ended due to your China feedback.'”

“They are a 100% American-made group, however they’re being managed and run by the largest dictatorship on the planet, China,” he continued. “How can China hearth an American citizen from an American group? That is unacceptable.”

The Swiss-born, Turkish-raised participant grew to become an American citizen in 2021, and he added Freedom to his identify. He at the moment lives in Washington, DC, the place he’s in “fixed contact” with native authorities and the FBI because of being on Erdogan’s record.

“I’m being protected 24/7,” Freedom stated.

American basketball player Enes Kanter Freedom speaks during an interview with AFP at the United Nations Office in Geneva on April 5, 2022.

American basketball participant Enes Kanter Freedom speaks throughout an interview with AFP on the United Nations Office in Geneva on April 5, 2022.
(FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP through Getty Images)

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“I’m talking out as a result of I’m not the one one on that record. There are so many journalists, so many activists, and so many athletes, however they don’t seem to be as well-known as me. They are means simpler targets — and so they’re alone on the market.”

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