World

Turkey accuses Germany of supporting 'Muslim cleric behind failed military coup'

Turkey accuses Germany of supporting 'Muslim cleric behind failed military coup'

About 30,000 pro-Kurdish protesters gathered in the central city of Frankfurt on March 18 to protest against the referendum sought by Erdogan, which would give the president greater power.

He said the demonstrators had used the upcoming Kurdish New Year festival of Newroz as a "pretext" for the rally as the new year falls on Tuesday.

In an interview with Der Spiegel published on Saturday, Germany's foreign intelligence chief Bruno Kahl said Ankara had repeatedly tried to convince Berlin that Gulen was behind the coup "but they have not succeeded".

The PKK is outlawed as a terrorist organization in Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

The spokesperson also condemned some European countries for trying to "interfere the referendum on April 16 in Turkey and take up a position in favor of "No" vote".

"It's an effort to invalidate all the information we have given them on FETO".


"We strongly condemn the German authorities for allowing the demonstrations by PKK terrorist supporters", Kalin said in a statement.

According to the Anadolu news agency, the ministry called Germany allowing use of PKK symbols during the marching a "thought-provoking case" and informed Germany's ambassador in Ankara about the discomfort on the issue.

President Tayyip Erdogan's spokesman responded Sunday, saying Kahl's comments were proof Germany was supporting Gulen's network, which Ankara refers to as the "Gulenist Terrorist Organisation" or "FETO".

On Wednesday Martin Schaefer, spokesman for the Foreign Ministry, said the German government had approved voting by the estimated 1.4 million Turks living in Germany who are eligible to cast ballots in the April 16 referendum. "Why are they protecting them?" But Kahl also said he did not think the Turkish government was behind the coup.

The Turkish government blames Gulen's network of followers in the military for the abortive putsch last July, when a group of rogue soldiers seized tanks, helicopters and war planes to attack parliament and attempt to overthrow the government.

Tens of thousands of people were arrested and civil servants were sacked in the purges after the coup attempt.


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