Turkish PM sues opposition leader for one million in compensation
ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has filed a one million Turkish Lira lawsuit against the main opposition leader, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu . AA PhotoTurkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has leveled a one million Turkish Lira lawsuit against Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, following the main opposition head’s remarks likening him to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Kılıçdaroğlu had compared the two leaders in a recent meeting of the European Parliament’s Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D), accusing both of ordering the deaths of their people and conducting an oppressive rule which heavily restricts people’s freedoms, saying, “Between al-Assad and Erdoğan, there is only a difference of shades.”
The statement had caused a stir at the meeting, causing S&D head Hannes Swoboda to define Kılıçdaroğlu’s words as “impossible to accept” and calling on the party to retract the statement. The CHP did not respond to such requests, and Kılıçdaroğlu subsequently cancelled a meeting with Swoboda on May 16.
Erdoğan’s lawyers filed the lawsuit a week after the row, calling on the court to fine the opposition leader a million liras in spiritual compensation and accusing Kılıçdaroğlu of overstepping freedom of speech.
Erdoğan’s legal team branded Kılıçdaroğlu’s statement as “inappropriate” and “wrongful”, accusing the leader of ignoring the interests of the public and attacking the prime minister’s personal rights.
The complaint further mentioned Kılıçdaroğlu’s previous fines which he had received by courts over the course of time for cases related to Erdoğan, saying the leader should be forced to pay “a heavy price” for speaking in such a manner when facing a wide and international audience like the European Parliament.