Turkish court issues warrant for German ex-MP for insulting Erdogan

ISTANBUL (dpa)- A Turkish court issued a detention warrant for a former German lawmaker on Tuesday as his trial started for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, his lawyer told dpa.
Memet Kilic, 52, a German-Turkish national, was a Green parliamentarian from 2009-13. While currently a lawyer in Heidelberg, south-western Germany, he remains politically active.

He was charged with insulting the president because of an interview he gave to Turkish news website ABC in 2017, in which he refers to war crimes and allegedly calls Erdogan a "traitor to the fatherland," according to the indictment.
The interview was mainly about Erdogan's policies in Syria.
Kilic was not present at the hearing in Ankara. The prosecutor argued that the charges are not deemed a crime in Germany and asked for Kilic to appear in court in Turkey, his lawyer, Veysel Ok, said.
This means that Kilic will be detained as soon as he enters Turkey, Ok explained. Kilic has no such plans, and Ok will appeal against the court's decision so that his client can testify from Germany.
The next hearing has been set for February 26.
The number of such cases has increased drastically since Erdogan became president, in 2014, Ok told dpa in a previous interview. They include charges against opposition politicians for years-old social media posts and both international and local journalists.

Tuesday, December 17th 2019

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