Erdogan’s Visit Leaves German Conservatives Fuming

Conservative German politicians have accused Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan of interfering in German affairs and harming efforts to integrate the country’s Turks. Are they really that angry or do they just want to whip up sentiment against Turkey’s bid to join the EU? German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her conservatives have heaped criticism on Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for telling Germany’s 2.5 million Turkish immigrants that assimilation is a crime against humanity. Erdogan, speaking in front of almost 20,000 people at a stadium in the German city of Cologne on Sunday, called for people of Turkish descent not to give up their cultural heritage. He encouraged Turks abroad to integrate in their new home countries, learn new languages and apply for political representation – without forgetting their Turkish background. It is important to learn German, but your Turkish language should not be neglected, he said. Erdogan had already caused controversy on Friday by calling for Turkish-Language High Schools ob e set up in Germany.