A German comedian has been banned from repeating parts of a controversial poem he wrote about the Turkish President.
Jan Böhmermann’s poem about Recep Tayyip Erdogan has already threatened a diplomatic row between Ankara and Berlin and resulted in calls for him to be prosecuted.
On Tuesday, the Hamburg state court granted Mr Erdogan an injunction allowing excerpts of the satirical poem not to be repeated.
Judges ruled that the Turkish President “does not have to accept” Mr Böhmermann reading out his work due to its “abusive and libellous content” – particularly parts making sexual references.
The court found it crossed the line between satirical criticism and pure abuse, but that six lines, including those on freedom of speech, were within the bounds of what is legally admissible.
“Through the poem's reference to racial prejudice and religious slander as well as sexual habits, the verses in question go beyond what the petitioner can be expected to tolerate,” the ruling said, although the decision can be appealed.
Mr Böhmermann's lawyer, Christian Schertz, said the ruling went against ”artistic freedom“ and was wrong to split what it acknowledged as a satirical work into parts.
The comedian responded by sharing a link to the Beastie Boys song ”(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (To Party)“ on Twitter, with heart, raised fist and winking face emojis.
His poem was originally aired on the Neo Magazin Royale programme on 31 March as a response to another satirical German song (“Erdowie, Erdowo, Erdogan”) that provoked outrage in Ankara earlier in the month.
Introducing it on television, Mr Böhmermann said he was conducting an experiment to illustrate the boundary between legitimate criticism and illegal abusive criticism (Schmähkritik) under German law.
The poem has since been read out in full by a German MP, during a parliamentary debate over 103 of the criminal code, which bans insulting the representatives of international governments.
Chancellor Angela Merkel was heavily criticised last month for granting a request from Turkey for Mr Böhmermann to be investigated over the poem.
His work has previously featured Yanis Varoufakis, the former Greek finance minister, the anti-immigration Alternative für Deutschland party and pro-refugee activists.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan's most controversial quotes
Recep Tayyip Erdogan's most controversial quotes
1/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Just a week before he was elected President, he called Erdogan Amberin Zaman, the Turkey correspondent for 'The Economist', a "shameless militant woman disguised under the name of a journalist" after she had asked an opposition leader whether "Muslim society is able to question" the authorities. "Know your place," Erdoğan said. "They gave you a pen and you are writing a column in a newspaper. "And then they invite you to a TV channel owned by Doğan media group and you insult at a society of 99 per cent Muslims," he said he said according to Today's Zaman newspaper.
Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images
2/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Turkish people are pictured chanting slogans during an anti-government protest on Taksim square in Istanbul, on 29 June, 2013. The protests were sparked by brutal police action against a local conservation battle to save Istanbul's Gezi Park, and soon turned into nationwide demonstrations against the government. Amid the protests - the worst in Turkey for years - Erdogan accused demonstrators of being "arm-in-arm with terrorism," according to Reuters. "This is a protest organized by extremist elements. We will not give away anything to those who live arm-in-arm with terrorism," he said.
GURCAN OZTURK/AFP/Getty Images
3/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
During last year’s protests, activists used social media to organise and disseminate information. Several dozen tweeters were arrested following the protests, according to local media reports. Erdogan responded by calling the technology a "menace". "There is now a menace which is called Twitter," Erdogan said. "The best examples of lies can be found there. To me, social media is the worst menace to society," BBC New reported.
Vladimir Astapkovich/RIA Novosti via Getty Images
4/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Not helping to allay accusations of authoritarianism, after Turkish police detained 49 people, including well-known business people and those close to the ruling party, Erdeogan ominously told reporter that Turkey "is not a banana republic" that can be affected by unnamed "operations", according to Today's Zaman newspaper. “People who are backed by the media and certain funders cannot change this country," he said. "People backed by certain dark gangs both inside and outside Turkey cannot mess with the country's path. They cannot change conditions in Turkey. Turkey is not a country that anyone can launch an operation into. The [Turkish] nation will not allow that. The AK Party, which is governing this nation, will not allow this."
Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
5/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Friends and relatives of the miners who died in an explosion at the Soma mine are pictured praying following the burial in Soma cemetery of the last body to be recovered from the mine in May 2014. At the time, the then-Prime Minister badly misjudged the Soma mining disaster, in which 301 workers died. He told the relatives of dead and dying miners that "these types of incidents are ordinary things", following allegations that the government had ignored safety concerns about the privately owned mine, the Guardian reported. In his defence, Erdogan recounted in a separate speech a list of mining disasters which occurred abroad, including a British disaster in 1862, and one in America "which has every kind of technology".
Oli Scarff/Getty Images
6/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Palestinians pictured attending Friday noon prayers in a destroyed mosque that was hit by Israeli strikes, in Gaza City. As Prime Minister, Erdogan has condemned Israel, accusing it of deliberately killing Palestinian mothers and warned that the it would "drown in the blood it sheds." Speaking to thousands of supporters during a rally in Istanbul ahead of the 10 August election, Reuters reported him as saying: "Just like Hitler, who sought to establish a race free of all faults, Israel is chasing after the same target." "They kill women so that they will not give birth to Palestinians; they kill babies so that they won't grow up; they kill men so they can't defend their country ... They will drown in the blood they shed," he said.
7/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
Amid the worst protests in Turkey for years which had spread across dozens of cities last June, Erdogan accused demonstrators of being "arm-in-arm with terrorism," according to Reuters. A demonstration to halt construction in a park in an Istanbul square grew into mass protests against a heavy-handed police crackdown and what opponents called Erdogan's authoritarian policies. "This is a protest organized by extremist elements," Erdogan said before departing on a trip to North Africa. "We will not give away anything to those who live arm-in-arm with terrorism," he said.
Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images
8/8 The Turkish President's craziest quotes
In March 2014, Erdogan accused a 15-year-old boy who died from injuries sustained in last year's anti-government protests of being linked to terrorism. Berkin Elvan, who became a symbol of anti-government protests, had gone to pick up bread when he was hit with a teargas canister - sending him into a nine-month coma before he passed away. In a speech broadcast on state TV, Erdogan said of Berkin: "This kid with steel marbles in his pockets, with a slingshot in his hand, his face covered with a scarf, who had been taken up into terror organisations, was unfortunately subjected to pepper gas. “How could the police determine how old that person was who had a scarf on his face and was hurling steel marbles with a slingshot in his hand?”
ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images
Prosecutors haven't yet decided whether to file charges under a little-used German law forbidding insult to foreign heads of state, which could be scrapped by 2018.
The case has caused outcry from groups advocating freedom of speech, who are calling for the law to be scrapped.
Hugh Williamson, Human Rights Watch’s Europe director, said: “The poem is certainly highly offensive, but it is in situations such as this when we need to stand up for protection of free speech.
“Germany bears responsibility for having such a bad law on the books and the sooner it is repealed, the better.”
The scandal came shortly after the EU made a controversial deal with Turkey aiming to slow the flow of refugees across the Aegean Sea to Greece.
Mr Erdogan is known for his sensitivity to criticism, with prosecutors opening more than 1,800 cases against people for alleged insults since he took office in 2014.