German national facing trial for insulting Turkishness

A German national is under investigation for insulting Turkishness after being detained following an argument with Turkish a citizen in the southern Antalya province, Sözcü newspaper reported on Tuesday.

The 63-year-old German dentist, identified as Kristian B., was detained for violating Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code on the denigration of Turkishness, following remarks the German national made to a Turkish citizen.

“This is what you Turks are like. This can’t be considered a democratic country any way,” the dentist reportedly told a Turkish national during a disagreement between the pair by the baggage carousel at Antalya Airport. 

The Turkish citizen then filed a complaint with Turkish police, sharing video footage of the argument with officials.

Kristian B. was released shortly after being detained, according to Sözcü, but officials have seized the German national’s passport and other documents pending trial.

Article 301 of the Turkish penal code makes it illegal to insult Turkey, the Turkish nation, Turkish government institutions, or Turkish national heroes such as Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey.

The crime carries a penalty of up to two years in prison.