Turkey PM slams Merkel stance on EU bid

November 2, 2011 02:07


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BERLIN - Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has accused Germany in a newspaper interview of letting Turkey down by not doing more to support its European Union membership bid and failing to recognize Turks' efforts to integrate in German society.

The interview appeared in Wednesday's edition of the mass-circulation paper Bild, hours before Erdogan meets Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin for a ceremony commemorating the 50th anniversary of the labor pact which brought large numbers of Turkish workers to Germany.

Ties between the two leaders are strained because of Merkel's deep reservations about Turkey joining the EU, and Erdogan's speeches to the Turkish community on previous trips to Germany, in which he urged Turks not to forget their roots.

Asked what he considered German politicians' biggest failing over integration, Erdogan said: "German politicians do not acknowledge enough the integration of the three million Turks in Germany."

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