An administrative inquiry for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been launched into the incoming Republican People’s Party (CHP) mayor of İzmir’s Torbalı district due to his alleged remarks on the day he took over the municipality from the ruling party mayor, the Diken news website reported.

According to an Interior Ministry statement, CHP Mayor Ramazan İsmail Uygur made remarks insulting Erdoğan and threatening the former mayor during the handing over ceremony.

Insulting the president is a crime in Turkey, according to the controversial Article 299 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK). Whoever insults the president can face up to four years in prison, a sentence that can be increased if the crime was committed through the mass media.

13,000 cases have been filed against individuals over the past seven years based on Article 299. The slightest criticism of Erdoğan is often considered an insult, and there has been a rise in the number of cases in Turkey in which people inform on others claiming that they insulted the president, the government or government officials.