Turkey says Swedish determination to not probe Kurd protest ‘absurd’

Turkey on Tuesday denounced as “absurd” a call by a Swedish prosecutor to not open an investigation right into a protest by Kurds in central Stockholm the place an effigy of the Turkish president was hung from a lamppost.

Final week’s protest exterior Stockholm Metropolis Corridor drew an indignant backlash from Turkey, a NATO member which has been holding off on approving Sweden’s utility to hitch the army alliance till the Swedish authorities cracks down on teams that Ankara regards as safety threats. Turkey summoned the Swedish ambassador and canceled a go to by the speaker of the Swedish parliament in response to the incident.

In Sweden, a newspaper reported {that a} prosecutor has determined to not open a prison investigation into the hanging of an effigy of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Stockholm, saying no unlawful act was dedicated. District Legal professional Lucas Eriksson advised Sweden’s tabloid Aftonbladet concerning the determination.

However Turkish Overseas Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu disagreed, saying the protest amounted to racism and hate crime.

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“The choice to not examine made by the (Swedish) prosecution is extraordinarily absurd,” Cavusoglu mentioned throughout a joint information convention with the visiting Iranian overseas minister. “This was a racist incident which consists of hate crimes. Subsequently (the choice to not prosecute, examine) can be towards common regulation and is against the law underneath worldwide regulation.”

“If Sweden thinks it’s stringing us together with these phrase video games, I’d wish to say they’re kidding themselves,” he mentioned.

Alarmed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Sweden and Finland dropped their longstanding insurance policies of army nonalignment and utilized to hitch NATO in Could. All 30 member international locations should conform to admit the 2 Nordic neighbors into the safety group.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks through the opening Ceremony of Amasya Badal Tunnel through video convention on the presidential complicated in Ankara, Turkiye on Jan. 19, 2023. 
(Photograph by Murat Kula/Anadolu Company through Getty Photographs)

The Turkish authorities has pressed Finland and Sweden to crack down on Kurdish exiles it accuses of hyperlinks to the banned Kurdistan Staff’ Celebration and teams it considers to be terrorist organizations, and to extradite individuals suspected of terror-related crimes. Cavusoglu mentioned final month that Sweden was not even “midway” by way of addressing his nation’s issues.

Images posted on social media confirmed a model resembling Erdogan hanging the other way up. A gaggle calling itself the Swedish Solidarity Committee for Rojava claimed it was behind the protest. Rojava is a Kurdish title for north and east Syria.

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Final week, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson known as the protest as an act of “sabotage” towards Sweden’s bid to hitch NATO.

The Ankara chief prosecutor’s workplace launched an investigation into the incident following a prison criticism filed by Erdogan’s legal professionals and has despatched a proper request for data and proof from Swedish authorities.

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