ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkish prosecutors launched an investigation on Tuesday into remarks about President Tayyip Erdogan by Dutch far-right chief Geert Wilders, Turkish state media reported.
Wilders known as Erdogan a terrorist on Twitter on Monday and urged Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte to expel the Turkish ambassador to the Netherlands. He additionally known as for Turkey to be expelled from NATO.
Prosecutors in Ankara launched an investigation into Wilders over posts on Twitter together with images and written insults towards Erdogan, the state-run Anadolu information company mentioned, citing the prosecutor’s workplace.
Wilders, chief of the Freedom Get together within the Netherlands, is one in every of Europe’s most outstanding far-right politicians and has been a key determine in shaping the immigration debate in his nation, though he has by no means been in authorities.
His feedback drew a backlash from Turkish officers.
“This fascist who attacked our President would have been a rattling Nazi if he had lived throughout World Battle Two. If he had been residing within the Center East proper now, he can be a Daesh assassin,” Omer Celik, a spokesman for Erdogan’s AK Get together, mentioned on Twitter, utilizing one other identify for Islamic State.
Wilders was acquitted in a hate speech trial in 2011 for remarks likening Islam to Nazism and calling for a ban on the Koran. In September 2020, he was acquitted by an appeals courtroom of discrimination, though the courtroom upheld a conviction for deliberately insulting Moroccans.
Erdogan final 12 months filed a separate prison criticism in Turkey towards Wilders over a cartoon picture of him captioned “terrorist” and a separate picture of a sinking ship with a Turkish flag.
The prosecutor’s workplace couldn’t be reached on Tuesday to say whether or not that criticism had led to an investigation.
Rutte has criticised Turkish authorized motion towards Wilders, saying the politician was exercising his proper to free speech.
(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Enhancing by Dominic Evans)
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