[Ed. – On such threads hang our way of life.]
Germany said on Monday it was examining a formal request made by Turkey for it to prosecute a comedian who recited an obscene poem about Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in a satirical show on national television.
German prosecutors have already begun investigating Jan Boehmermann, the iconoclastic host of the late-night “Neo Magazin Royale” on the public channel ZDF, on suspicion of the crime of “offending foreign states’ organs and representatives”.
Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said the Turkish embassy had sent Germany’s foreign ministry a cable with “a formal request from the Turkish side for a prosecution in connection with comments made in this broadcast.”
“The content of this cable and the way forward will now be carefully examined by the government,” Seibert told a regular government news conference. “It will take a few days. I can’t and don’t want to anticipate the results of this examination.”
The incident is awkward for German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has spearheaded EU efforts to secure Turkey’s help in dealing with Europe’s migrant crisis.