Turkey slams Austrian Chancellor’s remarks on EU membership

Ankara, Aug 5 (IANS) Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Friday criticised Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern’s remarks in which he suggested that the European Union (EU) should end accession talks with Ankara.

“The Austrian chancellor has to look at his country first. Austria is the capital of radical racism,” Xinhua news agency quoted Cavusoglu as saying in an interview with local media.

Cavusoglu described the comments as “ugly”, saying that he received them with “astonishment” and “regret”.

On August 3, Kern called the accession talks with Turkey a “diplomatic fiction” and he wanted the EU leaders to reconsider their approach to Turkey.

Tensions between the two countries had been on the rise since last month.

Austria had summoned Turkey’s ambassador on July 21 to explain Ankara’s links to demonstrations in the country in support of the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Turkey has been a candidate country for EU membership since 2005.

–IANS

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