A top Turkish official has taken to social media to criticize comments on Turkey by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her opponent during a televised pre-election debate.
Spokesman to the Turkish presidency Ibrahim Kalin tweeted on Monday that Merkel and Martin Schulz were attacking Turkey and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as a diversion from more urgent problems, such as a surge in discrimination.
Kalin said Europe’s attitude toward Turkey served to create populism in German politics which would fuel discrimination and racism, Xinhua news agency reported.
In Sunday’s debate, Schulz said he would end talks on Turkey joining the European Union because of Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian policies.
Merkel, who has previously expressed doubts about Turkey joining the EU, said Turkey “is departing from all democratic practices at breakneck speed”.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that Turkey should not become a number of the European Union (EU) but declined to close the door for Ankara.
“I don’t see Turkey entering the European Union, I never did, it was different for the SPD however,” said Merkel on Sunday in the TV duel with her major election rival Martin Schulz of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).
Merkel argued that the cease of the accession talks with Turkey can only be decided in the concert of the EU states.
“Such a step must be well considered,” said the German Chancellor.
Merkel said she did not want to break Germany’s ties with Turkey or cease Turkey’s opportunity to join the EU, as at least 50 per cent Turkish people hope to join. The decision needs careful consideration.
Schulz said at the TV duel that if he becomes German Chancellor, he will stop accession talks with Turkey.