Friday, 05 June, 2020

Turks in Germany forbidden to vote on death penalty - Merkel

Yildirim urges Turkish ex-pats to develop ties with UK Turks in Germany forbidden to vote on death penalty - Merkel
Christy Curtis | 12 May, 2017, 01:26

Turkish citizens living in Germany will not be allowed to vote in a potential referendum to bring back the death penalty in Turkey, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday.

Turkish President Erdogan, who is to gain enormous powers thanks to the referendum, has responded by telling the observers to "know their place" and accusing the West of a "crusader mentality" against Turkey. But many campaign rallies were banned by local authorities.

"The federal government in no way plans or discusses the issue of ousting from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation such an important partner as Turkey which has been fighting for the freedom of the West together with us for generations", Schaefer told reporters answering the question whether German authorities intend to question Turkey's membership of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation in context of the recent referendum.

In March previous year, the European Union signed an accord with Turkey to speed up the accession talks, along with visa liberalisation and billions in aid in return for Ankara halting a flood of migrants, mostly from Syria and Iraq, coming to Europe.

Erdogan and top Turkish officials have also threatened to rip up an European Union deal for billions in aid in return for Ankara halting a flood of migrants coming to Europe because of a lack of progress in membership talks. In return Ankara agreed to help halt the flow of migrants coming to Europe.

"We usually don't answer hypothetical questions but this question is unfortunately, unfortunately not so hypothetical as it is being discussed in Turkey", Merkel stated.

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"We will not give permission for something we are not obligated to do, and whose content we absolutely reject, for example, the death penalty", she added.

"It is always better to talk to each other, instead of talking about each other", she said.

"We do what we consider the right thing to do". She received support even from Martin Schulz, the leader of the Social Democratic Party and her main challenger in September elections.

Reinstating the death penalty is seen by Erdogan as a means of punishing the alleged coup plotters linked to US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed for the attempt to topple the current Turkish government.

"The asylum seekers are reportedly Turkish officials with diplomatic passports who used to be stationed at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation bases in Germany and were later dismissed by Ankara", Russia Today reported.

Thousands of soldiers, judges and police officers were arrested in the wake of the coup attempt and tens of thousands of state officials have been dismissed.

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