‘Erdogan’s party’ launched in Germany – Bild

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara, on January 24, 2024. ©  ADEM ALTAN / AFP

Media outlet claims Germany’s new political force DAVA is an offshoot of the Turkish president’s AKP Justice and Development Party Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara, on January 24, 2024. © ADEM ALTAN / AFP

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ‘Justice and Development Party’ AKP is to have an affiliated Germany-based organization contesting this June’s election to the European Parliament, Bild has claimed.

Last July, the Turkish head of state decried the fact that his country’s EU accession process had been in limbo for years, with Ankara having officially applied back in 1987 to join the bloc.

Relations between Türkiye and the West soured early last year following a number of Koran-burning stunts by European right-wing activists, one of which was staged outside the Turkish consulate in Stockholm. President Erdogan demanded at the time that European authorities take measures against those responsible.

In its report on Sunday, Bild described Germany’s Democratic Alliance for Diversity and Awakening (DAVA) as the “latest offshoot of Erdogan’s [Justice and Development Party] AKP.”

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In a post on Facebook published by an associate last Tuesday, DAVA’s chair Teyfik Oezcan announced the party’s foundation, saying that it “presents itself as a new political homeland for a lot of citizens who are not represented by established parties.”

He went on to lament that “nationalism [and] anti-Muslim racism” have created a situation where “people with foreign roots” feel like they are not being accepted as “full-value members of European society,” as evidenced by discrimination when looking for apartments, applying for jobs or dealing with civil servants.

Oezcan wrote that the new party “demands a pragmatic and ideology-free refugee policy,” insisting that Germany is already short of hundreds of thousands of workers.

The politician also revealed DAVA’s plans to participate in the upcoming European Parliament election this summer, naming its candidates.

Bild, for its part, estimated that there are currently 2.5 million Muslim German citizens with voting rights. 2.5 million more people of similar background could be granted the same rights this year as a result of amendments to Germany’s citizenship law, the media outlet noted.

According to the article, this could represent a promising voter base for the newly-established political force.

The tabloid went on to emphasize that President Erdogan enjoys high popularity among the Turkish diaspora living in Germany, with 67% voting for him in last May’s Turkish presidential election.

Bild also quoted a member of the Christian Democratic (CDU) party as urging German authorities to look into DAVA’s “connections to the Turkish government” and to intervene “if it comes to direct influence” by Ankara.

Speaking last July, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock told reporters that Türkiye’s EU accession negotiations were “in deep freeze” because Ankara had failed to meet key criteria, including those related to the rule of law and human rights. (RT)

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