Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has said Turkey and Germany have taken many positive steps toward improving their relations.
Ties between Ankara and Berlin have been strained since the defeated coup in Turkey in 2016, as Turkish politicians heavily criticized their German counterparts for failing to show strong solidarity with Turkish government against the attempted military takeover.
Ankara slammed Berlin for granting asylum to several coup suspects, turning a blind eye to outlawed groups and terrorist organizations like PKK and FETÖ, which use Germany as a platform for their fund-raising, recruitment and propaganda activities.
However, both sides have taken steps in recent months towards improving bilateral relations.
„We did not have any problems with Germany. They had problems with us. But now, they have realized that they cannot find a more reliable partner than Turkey,” Çavuşoğlu told Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview.
Çavuşoğlu said President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s recent visit to Germany was „very fruitful and successful”.
German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier is set to visit Turkey on Thursday and Friday, accompanied with a group of businesspeople.
Turkish FM said there was a significant rise in the number of German tourists coming to Turkey.
Turkey does not want sour relations with any country, according to Çavuşoğlu.
„However, unfortunately, the European politics has reached such a point that populism is at its peak. As Islamophobia and anti-Turkey attitude unites in especially election periods, we have seen negative attitudes,” he added.
He also said an updated of Customs Union agreement between the EU and Turkey was in the interest of more than half of the EU countries.
Regarding the EU-Turkey relations, Çavuşoğlu said Turkey was aware of the difficulties.
„We know that there are obstacles which are mostly political. In other words, they are not technical,” he said.