Police protection for comedian who insulted Turkish President
German TV comic, Jan Boehmermann, above, has been placed under police protection after he read an ‘obscene’ poem about Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whom he accused of having sex with goats and sheep.
Erdogan has filed a criminal complaint against the satirist in a case that has prompted a debate in Germany over freedom of speech. The German lawyer acting on behalf of President Erdogan said on Tuesday night that his client wanted Boehmermann to be punished:
To get him back on the right path.
German prosecutors, according to this report, are investigating whether Boehmermann broke a law against insulting foreign leaders.
Public broadcaster ZDF announced on Tuesday that his weekly satire programme would not go ahead this week because of:
The vast amount of media reporting and the resulting focus on the programme and its presenter.
This BBC report explains that his poem was broadcast days after the Turkish government complained to the German ambassador to Ankara about a satirical song on another German channel which mocked Erdogan’s authoritarian style of government.
Meanwhile, senior German conservative politician Andreas Scheuer, above, said Erdogan’s response was “hard to bear” and that Europe should not abandon its enlightened principles.
The general secretary of the CSU, sister party of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU, added political Islam was undermining integration.He insisted that German must become the language of the country’s mosques, and that foreign funding from Turkey and Saudi Arabia must stop.
Asked about Turkey’s role in funding German mosques, he called for an Islam law that prevented foreign and sometimes extreme values from being imported from abroad.
Financing of mosques or Islamic kindergartens from abroad, such as from Turkey or Saudi Arabia, must be stopped. All imams have to be trained in Germany and must share our values. German must become the language of the mosque.
Some three million people in Germany have at least one parent from Turkey and most mosques in Germany are part of the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), a branch of the main Turkish religious authority.
While many of Germany’s imams do come from Turkey and are seen as officials of the Turkish state, several German universities have set up Islamic centres in recent years with the aim of training a new generation. Several Muslim communities have also moved to free themselves of influence from Ankara.