Miss Turkey stripped of crown due to tweet on abortive coup


Miss Turkey stripped of crown due to tweet on abortive coup

Miss Turkey has been stripped of her title after posting an "unacceptable" tweet claiming menstrual blood "represents the martyrs" who fought in last year's failed military coup.

The organisers of th show said that they had seen the tweet after the beauty contest's results were announced and had to hold an hours-long meeting to verify the post.

"To celebrate July 15 Martyr's Day, I began the morning by getting my period".

Instead, runner-up Asli Sumen will now represent Turkey in China. "I am celebrating the day by bleeding on behalf of our martyrs' blood", she wrote.

Esen, a university student and model said she meant no political message in her post.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan regularly refers to the "martyrs" who died resisting the coup. Esen reportedly denied the account was hers.

Can Sandıkçıoğlu, president of Miss Turkey, said: "We regret to inform you that this tweet has been posted by Itır Esen".

"It is not possible for the Miss Turkey Organization, which aims to introduce and support Turkey in the world, to accept such a post".

The organization said the tweet came to their attention after the competition and that it took them "hours" to determine that was Esen's.

The teenager added: "My family raised me by teaching to respect our homeland and nation".

Esen is not the first Miss Turkey to find herself embroiled in a political row.

In 2015, prosecutors launched an investigation against former Miss Turkey beauty queen Merve Buyuksarac on charges of insulting Erdogan through social media posts.

He later withdrew them, saying he was inspired by the feelings of unity after the failed coup. More than 150,000 state employees have been dismissed and some 50,000 people arrested.