WORLD

German politician's racist remarks enrages Turks

GERMAN POLITICIANS RACIST REMARKS ENRAGES TURKS

Germany's Turkish community has slammed far-right politician Andre Poggenburg for his racist remarks on Turkish immigrants, whom he labeled "camel herders" and "caraway traders".

Gokay Sofuoglu, chairman of the Turkish Community in Germany (TGD), told Anadolu Agency on Thursday a legal complaint would be filed against Poggenburg.

"History of Germany shows us the consequences of turning a blind eye to such racist developments," Sofuoglu said, and called on German politicians and intellectuals to take a clear stance against such racist rhetoric.

Poggenburg, chairman of far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) in the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt, made the racist remarks during a party meeting in Nentmannsdorf on Wednesday.

Germany has a three million-strong Turkish community, many of whom are second and third-generation, German-born citizens of Turkish descent whose grandparents moved to the country during the 1960s.

The EU's largest economy has witnessed growing Islamophobia and hatred of migrants in recent years, triggered by propaganda from the far-right and populist parties who exploit fears over the refugee crisis and terrorism.

The far-right AfD became the third-largest party in Germany's federal parliament after winning 12.6 percent of the vote in federal elections last year.

In its campaign, the AfD attacked Chancellor Angela Merkel's open-door policy for refugees, arguing the country faces the threat of "Islamization", especially after nearly one million refugees, mostly from Syria and Iraq, arrived in the country since 2015.

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