The list of topics is long when Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) meets Turkish President Recep Tayyip this Friday afternoon Erdoğan meets: Libya,
Syria, refugees, bilateral affairs. Almost two hours are in the Vahdettin Pavilion in the Asian part of the
Metropolis of Istanbul scheduled for discussion.
Before the visit, Cem Özdemir (The Greens) expressed critical words regarding the refugee issue: the EU must not be blackmailed by the Turkish president on the subject of Syrian refugees, said the member of the Bundestag. "Together with our EU partners, we have to prepare for Erdoğan to send a calculated number of refugees to Europe over the course of the year," said Özdemir. "We can't fool ourselves: Erdoğan uses the refugee question as a lever to destabilize liberal democracies." For the Turkish president, "a weak Europe is good news". Özdemir also said: "Of course, the EU must help all neighboring Syrian countries to care for refugees. Erdoğan has warned several times recently that his country cannot cope with a new increase in refugee numbers from Syria alone.
Ozdemir criticized Merkel also for not taking him to Turkey. "Since I campaigned heavily for the Armenia resolution in 2016, I have not been to Turkey for understandable reasons," said Özdemir the world, "It would have been a strong sign" if he had been part of the delegation. "Ankara could have been signaled that we belong to different parties, but we do not allow ourselves to be divided. The rule of law and freedom of expression are not negotiable for us as democrats."
"In terms of domestic politics, President Erdogan is trampling on human and civil rights"
FDP foreign politician Alexander Graf Lambsdorff also asked Merkel to come up with clear words during her visit. "In terms of domestic politics, President Erdogan
and civil rights with feet. Parliament is disempowered, the judiciary
is under the control of the government, the media are aligned, "said the FDP parliamentary group vice-president and added:" Turkey is foreign policy
to go it alone in military action in Syria and Libya
Islamist militias. All of this contradicts the obligations of one
Member of NATO and a candidate for EU membership. "
Lambsdorff also asked the Chancellor not to allow herself to be blackmailed on the refugee question. "Turkey benefits from the EU-Turkey agreement,
the EU as well. Neither side can have an interest in escalation
"Instead of threatening each other, it would be better to have each other
listen, keep the respective promises and straighten out
Pursuing interests together.
Merkel started her program in Istanbul in the morning with a meeting of business representatives. The meeting was co-organized
by the German-Turkish Chamber of Commerce and Industry (AHK), the
Companies from both countries. The Turkish economy is not doing well and the government wishes
more German investments. According to official information, in
the Turkey Around 7,400 companies with German equity investments are already active.
The conversation with Erdoğan begins in the early afternoon (local time). The Turkish president has repeatedly threatened to open borders and expel more refugees Syria to Europe if he doesn't get more help for the millions of Syrian refugees that Turkey hosts.
Özdemir also warned against believing that Erdogan could "calm down with a particularly courteous approach". The opposite is the case. Erdoğan escalated the dispute with NATO partner Greece over gas deposits in the Mediterranean. It is also "scandalous that Erdoğan arbitrarily arrests and detains people, whether Germans or Turks, past his own judiciary." Merkel must make this clear.
According to Özdemir, German weapons "had lost nothing in Turkey under Erdogan." The threat posed by Erdoğan's mercenary troops in Libya must be taken more seriously. "These are mercenaries who are to be attributed to the criminal and jihadist milieu and should under no circumstances be allowed to enter the EU or even Germany," said the Green.