No one can treat Turks as second-class Europeans, FM Davutoğlu says
VIENNA – Anadolu Agency
Foreign Minister Davutoğlu poses in a 'selfie' with students during his visit to Jordan, May 5. AA PhotoNo one should treat Turks as "second-class Europeans" and those demanding respect should first respect Turkey, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said May 6, responding to recent comments from the German president.
“If a German president comes to Turkey and says, ‘I’m concerned about Turkey’s future’ due to false information, then we will go to each German city and say, ‘We are concerned about Germany’s future’ because of neo-Nazi murders,” Davutoğlu said at the “Strategic Depth and Rising Turkey” conference in Vienna.
“If someone wants to be respected, he should respect us. No one can treat us like second-class Europeans,” he added.
German President Joachim Gauck visited Turkey last week and warned against the consequences of curbs to freedom of expression, while also criticizing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s leadership style. He said he was shocked by the government’s harsh attempts to stamp out street protests and clamp down on the media.
Davutoğlu praised Turkey’s hospitality to each foreign guest, as was the case with Gauck, but said this would not be allowed to "hurt the nation's honor."
“We will offer every kind of hospitality, but we won’t allow anyone to hurt this nation’s honor. There's no need to worry about us ... The only authority to worry about this nation is the nation itself. No one else has the right to worry or to express his worry about this nation,” he added.
“If we have something to worry about, we should be worried about the racism that has penetrated the European streets, Islamophobia, the sabotaged houses of Turks,” Davutoğlu also said.
After Gauck's visit, Prime Minister Erdoğan said Gauck was still acting "like a pastor" – the president’s former occupation in the former East Germany – for supporting an atheistic interpretation of the Alevi religion in Germany.