Deutsche Welle: ‘Many Turkish hearts in Germany beat for Erdogan’

Photo of a Turkish enclave in Germany

It’s still quiet at 9:30 in the morning on Cologne’s Keupstrasse. The smell of freshly baked flatbread wafts from a bakery. Most of the people in the neighborhood have Turkish roots. A man with a trim black moustache sweeps the sidewalk in front of his shop. Arif Yucatas sits in a cafe across from his shop for ladies’ fashions, waiting, letting his prayer beads glide through his fingers, taking small sips of hot black tea from the small glass set on the table next to him. It’s too early for customers.

Yucatas was born in Turkey. He came to Germany when he was eight years old, and now, he said, he’s “almost” integrated. He proudly announces that he will be present when Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan takes center-stage on Saturday in Cologne. “It’s going to be a great appearance,” the 43-year-old said. “I think he’s a popular hero.”

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And Germany is just another Turkish province, I suppose.

It is ridiculous to me that these people with German citizenship should be allowed to vote in Turkish elections. They need to make up their minds: if you are that fond of Erdogan, perhaps you should move back to Turkey, where you can experience life with him as your leader.

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