Turkish EU Minister and Chief Negotiator Volkan Bozkır has slammed the European Union’s envoy to Turkey, Hansjörg Haber, over recent remarks regarding an EU-Turkey deal on refugees and visa-free travel. Bozkır asked Haber to explain what he meant when he used a German saying “start like a Turk and end like a German,” while discussing the Turkey-EU visa liberalization deal. “The German ambassador of the EU should explain to the Turkish nation what he meant when he said ‘like a German and like a Turk.’ No diplomat and especially no ambassador can address the president of a country where he is posted for his job like this,” Bozkır said in posts shared on his personal Twitter account. Stating that Turkey-EU relations were at a critical juncture that could not tolerate diplomatic gaffes, humiliation and negativity, Bozkır said Haber should explain what he meant by his words. On May 13, Haber told a group of journalists that the old German saying of “Start like a Turk and end like a German,” had been reversed in the case of fulfilling the 72 criteria needed for the EU to grant Turkish citizens visa-free travel inside the EU.
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Newsline: Turkey slams EU envoy over remarks