Erdoğan files criminal complaint against CHP leader alleging insult

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Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, Leader of the Republican People's Party (CHP) (Mustafa Kamaci / Anadolu Agency)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has filed a criminal complaint against main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu on the allegation that he insulted the president in a statement on Jan. 5, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Monday.

According to the report, in the petition submitted to the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office by Hüseyin Aydın, a lawyer representing Erdoğan, Kılıçdaroğlu is accused of violating the 299th article of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK). The complaint includes passages from the CHP leader’s speech of front of the Beşiktaş municipal building on Jan. 5.

According to Article 299, any person who insults the president of the republic shall be sentenced to a penalty of imprisonment for a term of one to four years. Where the offense is committed in public, the sentence to be imposed shall be increased by one sixth. The initiation of prosecution for such an offense shall be subject to the permission of the minister of justice.

Erdoğan on Dec. 29 filed a lawsuit against Kılıçdaroğlu for TL 250,000 in non-pecuniary damages for violating his personal rights.

In the lawsuit submitted by Erdoğan’s lawyer, Aydın, Kılıçdaroğlu is accused of using insulting expressions that violate the personal rights of the Turkish president during speeches on Dec. 22 and Dec. 24, 2017.

Erdoğan and members of his family on Dec. 1 filed a lawsuit against Kılıçdaroğlu for TL 1.5 million ($380,000) in damages for creating hatred in society against the president and his family during a speech on Nov. 28.

Kılıçdaroğlu said during his party meeting in Parliament on Nov. 28 that Erdoğan’s brother-in-law, brother, son and son’s father-in-law and his former executive assistant sent about $15 million to an offshore company called Bellway, Ltd., on the Isle of Man between December 2011 and January 2012.

On Nov. 24 Erdoğan filed another lawsuit against Kılıçdaroğlu for TL 1.5 million in non-pecuniary damages due to a speech on Nov. 21.

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