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Turkey condemns German reluctance on customs union expansion

Turkey condemns German reluctance on customs union expansion”

He regularly travelled to the United States to meet with Gulen, including a visit just two days before the 15 July coup attempt. Gulen, has however, denied the accusations.

Tensions increased after the abortive coup attempt against Mr Erdogan in July 2016, in which at least 240 people died.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on the Turkish population in Germany not to vote for those parties he called are "aggressive" against Turkey in the upcoming general elections.

"I am calling on all my countrymen in Germany: the Christian Democrats, SDP, the Green Party are all enemies of Turkey".

Upping the stakes in a intensifying row with Berlin, Erdogan said ethnic Turks in Germany should not cast their ballots either for Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Gabriel's Social Democratic Party (SPD), or the Greens. The authorities say they had visited Gulen in Pennsylvania to discuss the plot.

He accused the SPD and CDU of playing a game of "the more you beat up Turkey, the more votes you get" during the election campaign.

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"Give necessary support to political parties that do not engage in enmity against Turkey".

"We will not tolerate any kind of interference", said Merkel in response at a campaign event in the western city of Herford, while her foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel described the remarks as "unprecedented" interference with Germany's sovereignty.

The Turkish leader's intervention in the German campaign less than six weeks before the September 24 vote drew a swift rebuke from Social Democratic politicians, including chancellery candidate Martin Schulz and Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel.

Akhanli was born in Turkey but emigrated to Germany in 1991 after spending years in Turkish prison following the 1984 military coup in the country. "Now they have a foreign minister who does not know his limits".

Analysts estimate that about 1.2 million people of Turkish origin will have the right to vote in the September elections.



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