Relations between Turkey and Germany will likely normalise after the European country holds elections in September, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday in a speech to a business forum.
Erdogan said he believed criticism of Turkey from Europe was a result of domestic politics abroad, citing also a recent vote in the Netherlands, just prior to which Turkish ministers were banned from campaigning in Dutch cities, sparking a row.
“Now we observe that Germany is using the same tactics. I believe that they will return to normal after the elections,” Erdogan was quoted as saying by the state-run Anadolu news agency in Isparta, western Turkey.
After Turkish ministers were banned from holding campaign rallies in key European cities, Erdogan charged some European leaders were behaving like Nazis.
Tensions with Germany predate the latest election cycle but have picked up pace in recent months with the arrest of German journalist Deniz Yucel and human rights activist Peter Steudtner, who was nabbed along with the local director of Amnesty International.
Germany is moving its troops from the Incirlik airbase in southern Turkey to Jordan, where they will continue to take part in the US-led campaign to defeat Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, after Ankara banned a visit to the soldiers by German lawmakers.
Next month, German lawmakers are expected to visit a Nato base in Turkey, after initially being denied.
On Friday, Erdogan said the issue is “progressing in a positive direction”.
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