Turkey's prime minister said on Tuesday that Germany must decide between its friendship with Ankara and alleged coup plotters, after Berlin granted political asylum to military officials with suspected links to last year's failed putsch.
"Germany must decide on one thing: if it wants to further improve its relations with Turkey..., then it must turn its face to the Turkish republic, not to (putschists)," Binali Yildirim told his ruling party's lawmakers in the
He was referring to supporters of US-based Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Ankara for orchestrating the failed coup in July last year.
Tensions between the two NATO allies have been strained over the past year due to a number of issues, including Germany's greenlight for asylum petitions of Turkish nationals blamed by Ankara for playing a role in the coup attempt.
Yildirim on Tuesday confirmed Berlin's positive response to asylum requests opened the way for relations to be "strained again."
In retaliation, Turkey has refused to allow German lawmakers to visit a NATO base near Syria, a refusal the German foreign ministry described as "absolutely unacceptable."
Source: National News Agency