Turkey expressed its anger, after the incident of tearing up Turkish flag by a Greek deputy in the European Parliament, during a session of Parliament, condemning what it described as “racist behavior” that would escalate the tension between Ankara and Brussels.
During a debate on the situation of migrants in the Greek islands, on Wednesday evening, in the European Parliament, Iwanis Lagos, an independent European deputy, criticized Turkey before raising a paper with a picture of the Turkish flag printed and torn it apart.
He said: “You only care about not being harassed; Turkey has flooded us with an infinite number of immigrants. The Turkish flag is a bloodstained flag. The only thing that needs to be done is to say: Out, the Turks.” Lagos is a former deputy of the neo-Nazi party “Golden Dawn” from which he resigned in July.
On the other hand, Turkey responded angrily by its Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuş oughlu. He wrote on Twitter: “Racist minds know that we are breaking the fingers of those approaching our flag … for Europe’s spoiled children to learn to know where they are. Europe must say (‘Enough’) for hostility towards Islam.”
He added: “We are waiting for the European Union to do what is appropriate regarding this clown.” And the decision of Turkey in the European Parliament, Nacho Sanchez Amor, who last week made his first visit to this country, tried to calm the tension.
He wrote in a tweet: “Nothing justifies the taring up of a flag… This is an unfortunate act. The hate speech of the extreme extremist against Islam is not welcome in Brussels.”
The Greek Foreign Ministry, in turn, denounced “any act that insults a national emblem” and said: “In this case, the national flag of Turkey … the neo-Nazis represent only themselves.”
This MP, along with a group of former and current members of the “Golden Dawn” party, is accused of being involved in the 2013 murder of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Visas.
The flag-tearing incident comes as tension between Turkey and European countries, especially Greece, has risen, against the backdrop of Ankara’s efforts to explore for gas in the waters of the island of Cyprus. The European Union has always condemned the excavations carried out by Ankara in the eastern Mediterranean, and considered it “illegal”.
After an unprecedented crisis in 2015 caused by the influx of large numbers of migrants to Europe, in 2016 the European Union reached a controversial agreement with Turkey on immigration, which allowed the numbers of fleeing in secret to Europe to drop.
But the number of arrivals to the Greek islands has risen again in recent months, as Greece returned again in 2019 to be the main passage for migrants and refugees towards Europe.
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