Turkish court issues arrest warrant for ex-German MP for insulting Erdoğan

A Turkish court issued a detention warrant on Tuesday for a former lawmaker with Germany’s Green Party for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, German press agency dpa reported.

Fifty-two-year-old Memet Kılıc, who served as a parliamentarian with the Greens between 2009 and 2013, is accused of insulting Erdoğan during an interview he gave to Turkish news website ABC in 2017, it said. 

Kılıc, who currently works as a lawyer in Heidelberg, south-western Germany, allegedly called Erdoğan a "traitor to the fatherland" during the interview, dpa said the indictment.

The former Green Party MP was not present during the hearing in Ankara and the prosecutor has asked for Kılıc to appear in court in Turkey, Kılıc’s lawyer Veysel Ok told dpa. 

The next hearing in the case is scheduled for Feb. 26.

Insulting the president carries a sentence between one and four years, according to the Turkish Penal Code.

The country has seen a surge in the number of people on trial for insulting the president since Erdoğan became the country's president in 2014.

Between 2010 and 2017, 12,893 cases of insulting the president were filed. Of these, 12,305 were filed under the presidency of Erdoğan.