Sen. Lesser meets with Celtics center Enes Kanter during State House visit

BOSTON – Senator Eric P. Lesser met with Celtics center Enes Kanter Thursday during his visit to the State House. The NBA veteran addressed the Senate about his international human rights work.

Kanter is facing persecution in his native country of Turkey for his outspoken criticism of President Tayyip Erdogan. International human rights groups have condemned the Erdogan regime for increasing authoritarianism and largely shutting down Turkey’s independent press and judicial system. 

Kanter was invited to speak to the Senate body by Sen. Marc Pacheco.

“Enes Kanter is a true freedom fighter who refuses to be threatened into silence – which is far easier said than done,” said Sen. Lesser. “His story is a reminder of the courage that is required to stand up for democracy throughout the world. It was an honor to meet him.”

Due to threats from the Turkish government, Kanter does not travel outside of the U.S., foregoing a trip to London with the Blazers last season.

Kanter signed with the Celtics this summer. He is due to become a U.S. citizen in two years.

Eric Lesser