Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is suing Dutch opposition leader Geert Wilders after the politician posted a series of tweets against the Turkish leader, a crime that carries a sentence of up to four years in prison according to Turkish law, including one that described him as a “terrorist", according to the Anadolu Agency.
The complaint against Wilders, who is known for his strong views on Islam, accused him of using language “insulting the honor and dignity of our president and of targeting Erdogan’s personality, dignity and reputation,” according to Anadolu.
— Geert Wilders (@geertwilderspvv) October 24, 2020
Wilders, who is known for organizing a contest for caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, has been actively targeting Erdogan in recent days amid a growing spat between Turkey and European countries after Erdogan made comments questioning the mental health of Emmanuel Macron after the French President announced a crackdown on political Islam following the brutal beheading of high school teacher Samuel Paty earlier this month.
Erdogan's remarks prompted France to recall its ambassador to Ankara on Saturday.
On Monday, Erdogan repeated his comments about Macron: “These attacks [on Islam] have started with the encouragement of the leader of France, who is in need of mental checks.”
“In some European countries, hostility toward Islam and Muslims has become a policy encouraged and supported at the level of the head of state … I am calling out from here, you are the real fascists, you essentially are links in the chain of Nazism.”
Turkey and the EU are at odds over a growing list of issues, in particular Ankara’s energy exploration efforts in waters internationally recognized as belonging to Greece and Cyprus. Macron has been particularly vocal in his criticism of Ankara. France and Turkey also back opposing sides in the ongoing conflict in Libya.
— Geert Wilders (@geertwilderspvv) December 29, 2019