Three men arrested for shooting 19-year-old female Turkish TV contestant: report

Mutlu Kaya pictured on the social media account of Sibel Can, one of Turkey's best known folk pop singers, -- PHOTO: INSTAGRAM
Mutlu Kaya pictured on the social media account of Sibel Can, one of Turkey's best known folk pop singers, -- PHOTO: INSTAGRAM

ANKARA (AFP) - Police have arrested three men after over the shooting of a 19-year-old Turkish woman who had been competing in a national televised song contest, local media reported Tuesday.

Mutlu Kaya, who is from the conservative region of Diyarbakir in the Kurdish-majority southeast of Turkey, remained in a critical condition in hospital after she was shot in the head on Monday.

The three men later arrested by police included her 26-year-old boyfriend Veysi E, the Dogan news agency said.

Veysi E reportedly rejected the accusation against him, while admitting to being "opposed to Mutlu Kaya's participation on the show".

Kaya had been appearing on the Turkish TV talent show "Sesi Cok Guzel".

Turkish press reports said the woman had previously received death threats for appearing on the show.

The Posta newspaper had reported earlier this week, before the attack, that Kaya had been threatened from within her own family for going to Istanbul to take part in the contest.

The Kurdish majority southeast of Turkey is known for its strongly conservative values, with women expected to perform a traditional role.

Kaya was shot while she was at her home in the Ergani district of Diyarbakir province, Dogan reported, and is now in intensive care in Diyarbakir.

Reports said she was shot by an assailant who fired a bullet from the garden through the back window into the house.

Kaya had been mentored by Sibel Can, one of Turkey's best known folk pop singers who has been a household name for decades.

"My beautiful girl Mutlu, how could they wound you? I am very sad," Can wrote on her Instagram account on Monday.

The attack on Kaya comes at a time of intensifying anger in Turkey over the extent of violence against women, with hundreds of wives killed by their husbands every year.