Turkey not Germany's 'whipping boy', party leader says

Nationalist Movement Party chief backs government in dispute with Berlin

Turkey not Germany's 'whipping boy', party leader says

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey is not Germany’s “whipping boy”, the leader of the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) said Thursday as he came out in support of the government in its most recent dispute with Berlin.

Devlet Bahceli backed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his governing Justice and Development (AK) Party after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the Turkey-EU Customs Union would not be expanded and aid to Turkey cut to a minimum.

“Turkey is not a whipping boy of Germany,” Bahceli told a news conference in Ankara.

“The MHP stands by the government and state in its foreign policy, agreeing with its policies towards Germany.”

Bahceli, who has increasingly allied with the government in recent months, said the “mistakes” of German politicians did not go unnoticed in Turkey.

He said Germany had been “caught red-handed” in its support for terror groups such as the PKK and the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), which Ankara has said orchestrated last year’s defeated coup.

The refusal to extradite FETO suspects is one of numerous complaints Turkey holds against Germany.

Relations between Turkey and EU nations, particularly Germany, have been damaged by a series of disputes following the failed coup, in which 250 people were martyred.

The arrest of several German nationals, including a journalist and a rights activist, have angered Berlin and restrictions on German lawmakers’ access to Incirlik air base in southern Turkey have led to Germany withdrawing its forces.

Last weekend, Erdogan urged Turks in Germany to vote against “anti-Turkish” parties in Germany’s federal election next month.

When warned to stay out of German politics by German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, the president told him: “Know your place.”

Güncelleme Tarihi: 25 Ağustos 2017, 14:10