“The Turkish foreign ministry summoned today the Swedish ambassador to Ankara, Staffan Herrstrom, because of a broadcast on Swedish television (SVT) that contained insulting statements and images against Turkey and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” news agency Anadolu said.
In the dressing down, Herrstrom was told that the “impertinent and ugly expression and images” about Erdogan and Turkey were unacceptable.
On Friday, Kristoffer Ahonen Appelquist, the host of the satire show Svenska Nyheter on Swedish state broadcaster SVT called on the Swedish-Kurdish comic Kadir Meral, who for several minutes ridiculed Erdogan in Kurdish, finishing with what looked like a homophobic slur.
At the same time Ahonen Appelquist, called Erdogan dåre, Swedish for “a fool”.
The title of the episode, Vetoturken, or “the veto Turk”, was already offensive, as it use the “X-turken” format often used for racist Swedish meme videos (such as Pizzaturken, Bussturken, etc).
In the episode, Ahonen Appelquist at first ridicules Erdogan for his campaign theme song, then covers a woman who was imprisoned for calling Erdogan “grumpy” on Twitter, and talks of Turkeys 38,000 political prisoners, and lack of a free press.
He then covered the agreement struck at the Nato Madrid summit, and why allowing Swedish weapons exports to Turkey might mean they are used to wage war on Kurds in northern Syria, and how Erdogan is demanding Sweden send back ordinary Kurdish journalists who he sees as “terrorists”.
“It’s just ridiculous,” Ahonen Appelquist says. “He doesn’t even like them [the Kurds], and we do! And we use the Kurds for things, like culture and politics and Sommarprat [the Summer broadcasts from celebrities on Swedish radio] and stuff.”
He then brings on Meral, who joked that the bubbles from Nordstream were from Erdogan farting, calls him “grumpy” (thereby repeating the mild insult which had someone jailed), ridicules him for balding, and then attacks his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Finally, he says, “Erdogan, you think you are a Sultan, but really you are like a Sultan bed from Ikea, which stands on all fours in the bedroom.”
Then there’s a picture of Erdogan bent over in his underwear.
“But you know what, in Sweden, we think that that kind of thing is totally OK,” Meral ends.
You can see the episode (in Swedish) here.