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Germany 'Builds Berlin Wall' in Relations With Ankara – Turkish Minister for EU

Spectr News Theme sputniknews.com
8 March, 2017

Turkey's minister for EU affairs said the Turkish diaspora were facing pressure in Germany and added that Ankara would not recognize the Europe of Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders.

ANKARA (Sputnik) – The German authorities are constructing a "Berlin wall" in relations with Ankara, Turkish Minister for EU Affairs Omer Celik said Wednesday.

"The German authorities are building a Berlin wall in relations with Turkey," Celik said in an interview with the Anadolu news agency.

The Turkish minister pointed out that members of the Turkish diaspora were facing pressure in Germany.

Celik added that Turkey wanted to be part of Europe, which is not exposed to significant influence of right movements.

"Sometimes they ask me if Turkey wants to be part of Europe. I tell them the word 'Europe' is important if you ask that question. Which Europe? If you mean Sarkozy’s, Le Pen’s, [leader of the Dutch far-right Party for Freedom Geert] Wilders’ Europe, Turkey would never like to be within such Europe and will never see it as legitimate. However, Turkey wants to be a natural part of Europe that is integrated with political values and free from double standards on human rights and democracy, within a framework of peace and stability that the founding fathers created," he said.

On March 5, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan drew parallel between the German authorities and Nazis criticizing Berlin for banning Ankara’s campaign rallies on German soil ahead of a crucial vote on the constitutional reform.

Two cities in Germany withdrew last week their permissions for Turkish rallies that were to be addressed by the Turkish justice and economy ministers. Ankara is seeking support of its large expat community in Germany for a constitutional change that would give more powers to Erdogan, including granting the president the ability to appoint some top judges and declare a state of emergency.

The Turkish referendum on constitutional amendments will take place on April 16.

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