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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a meeting in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2016. Erdogan has hinted that Turkey would delay extraditing criminals back to the United States as long as U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed for Turkey's failed coup in July, is not returned to Turkey. (Murat Cetinmuhurdar/ Presidential Press Service, Pool photo via AP)

German prosecutors reject Erdogan’s appeal in libel case

German prosecutors say they’ve rejected Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s appeal of a decision to drop an investigation of a television comedian who wrote a crude poem about him.

Rhineland-Palatinate prosecutors in Koblenz said Friday they concurred with Mainz prosecutors’ decision to shelve the case earlier this month on grounds there was insufficient evidence to show that a crime had been committed, especially given its satirical context.

Comic Jan Boehmermann’s poem, which he read on public ZDF television, described the Turkish leader as “stupid, cowardly and uptight” and contained crude sexual references.

Chancellor Angela Merkel in April granted a Turkish request to allow the possible prosecution of Boehmermann for insulting a foreign head of state, while announcing she planned to repeal the law criminalizing insults of a foreign leader.


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