Prosecutor takes legal action against Turkey's main opposition leader for insulting Erdoğan

A Turkish prosecutor has filed a summary of proceedings against the main opposition party leader for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, pro-government Milliyet newspaper reported on Saturday. 

The Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office drafted a summary of proceedings against Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu based on his 2018 speech in which he strongly criticized the detentions of supposed members of Gülen movement and indicated Erdoğan's relation with the movement.

The government of Turkey has ordered a large number of arrests over alleged links to the Gülen religious movement, which the government blames for orchestrating the July 2016 coup attempt. The opposition leader then said the government arrested scores of people but the political wing of the clandestine movement sits at the presidential palace.

The summary of proceedings claimed Kılıçdaroğlu's speech constituted a crime by “insulting the president” and will be submitted to the discretion of parliament, which could lift his immunity to permit proceedings. 

The CHP voted in favour of legislation that allowed the lifting of parliamentary immunity in 2016, at the height of the government’s repression of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP). The move paved the way for the prosecution and imprisonment of 11 Kurdish deputies, including HDP co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ, on terrorism charges.