Germany: Schulz demands Erdogan stops interfering in German election

Leader of the Social Democratic Party of Germany Martin Schulz held a campaign rally in Essen, on Thursday, where he discussed recent comments made by the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan regarding the upcoming German Bundestag election. Erdogan recently commented that Germany's large Turkish community should not vote for the country's three major parties, the Christian Democratic Union... Еще (CDU), Social Democratic Party (SPD) or the Greens. Deeming this interference in Germany's democratic process, Schulz said, «We won't allow the cohesion of our country to be brought asunder by anybody: not from terrorists — who carry out cowardly attacks in this country — but also not from the Turkish President.» He went on to implore Turkish-Germans to feel just as much a part of the nation as other communities, «I say to our fellow citizens from Turkey, of whom many are here with us, 'You are a normal part of our society. You belong to us just as much as anyone else does.'» Schulz also suggested that, instead of criticising German political parties, Erdogan should be releasing German nationals currently detained in Turkey, «I implore Mr Erdogan once again, 'Don't make a circus with whatever interference you do in Germany, but rather give us the release of our innocent citizens.» On Wednesday this week, Germany's Ambassador to Turkey Martin Erdmann visited German journalist Deniz Yuecel and German human rights activist Peter Steudtner in prison in Silivri, near Istanbul. Germany's Foreign Ministry has reported that, to their knowledge, 22 German nationals have been detained by Turkey following the attempted coup against Erdogan's government in July of last year, a fact that has caused tension between the two nations.


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