British magazine launches ‘offensive’ poem about Erdogan contest
A contest offering a prize for the most offensive poem about Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been launched by a British magazine after German authorities began criminal proceedings against a comedian for offending him.
The Spectator is offering £1,000 (about US$1,400), donated by a reader, to the writer of the rudest limerick about the Turkish president.
Journalist Douglas Murray, who announced the competition online, said it was in response to Germany’s decision to prosecute comedian Jan Böhmermann for reciting a rude poem about Erdogan on a late-night comedy show.
Last week, Chancellor Angela Merkel gave the green light to criminal proceedings against Böhmermann for breaking a little-used law concerning insults against foreign heads of state.
Merkel, who previously described the poem as “deliberately insulting,” said it is up to prosecutors to decide whether to press charges.
Writing in the Spectator, Murray said: “The fact such a trial could even be contemplated demonstrates that Germany is becoming little more than a satrapy [province] of Erdogan’s.”
“Well I’m a free-born British man, and we don’t live under the blasphemy laws of such despots. In honor of this fact I have spent the weekend writing rude limericks about Mr Erdogan.
“And I would hereby like to invite all readers to join me in a grand Erdogan limerick competition.”
Murray included his own offensive limerick in the announcement.
“Recep Erdogan is the Turk’ll
Never tire of rim-jobs from his circle
Yet his chief-est delight
(Now Khilafa’s in sight)
Are the felchings he gets from Frau Merkel”
In inviting other poets, Murray stressed “the aim of the competition is to be as filthy and insulting as possible about Recep Erdogan.”
Human Rights Watch criticized Merkel’s decision to allow criminal proceedings against Böhmermann, calling on Germany to defend freedom of speech, “even if the contents of the speech are offensive to some.”
In a post online, Böhmermann said he felt “great solidarity” from the German people over the issue.
Germany’s public broadcaster ZDF announced last weekend it would offer Böhmermann full legal protection and defense in all courts against the defamation charges.
On March 31, the comedian recited a satirical poem on television suggesting that Erdogan enjoys watching child pornography and has an inclination towards zoophilia.
In response, the Turkish president accused him of “defamation” and called on the German government to prosecute the comic.
Commentators have criticized Merkel’s decision to allow criminal proceedings against Böhmermann, accusing the chancellor of caving in to Ankara’s demands as Turkey has recently become crucial to an EU plan to tackle the migrant crisis.