Turkish prosecutors have launched an investigation into a lawmaker from the country’s main opposition party accusing him of issuing threats against President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in televised remarks, according to local media reports.
The investigation into Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Engin Altay was launched by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office after Erdoğan filed a criminal complaint.
In a program on the pro-government A Haber TV on Tuesday, Altay talked about the similarities between the policies of Erdoğan and Adnan Menderes, a former prime minister who was executed following a military coup in Turkey in 1960, toward religious groups. He said like Erdoğan, Menderes also made concessions to religious groups, which spoiled them, forcing Menderes to push ahead with a law to protect Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the nation’s founder, apparently because those groups attacked Atatürk and his legacy.
“I hope Erdoğan will not have an end similar to that of Menderes’,” Altay said, criticizing Erdoğan for flirting with some religious groups in the country.
Due to these remarks he is accused of threatening Erdoğan with execution under the 106th article of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), which requires a prison sentence of between six months and two years.
In the meantime Turkey’s Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) also announced on Wednesday that it had launched an inquiry regarding Altan’s remarks.
Erdoğan frequently takes legal action against his critics. Hundreds of people face charges of insulting Erdoğan or his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) officials every day.