April 25, 2019

Germany accepts Turkish request to seek prosecution of German comedian

Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday that Germany has accepted a request from Turkey to seek prosecution of a German comedian who read out a sexually crude poem about Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on German television.

Under a section of Germany’s criminal code, the government has to authorise prosecutors to pursue a case against the comedian, Jan Boehmermann, who is accused of insulting a foreign leader.

“There were different opinions between the coalition partners – the conservatives and the SPD (Social Democrats),” Merkel told reporters at the Chancellery in Berlin.

“The outcome is that the German government will give the authorisation in the current case,” she added, stressing that this was not a decision about the merits of the prosecution’s case against Boehmermann.

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