Refugees and elections

Published 21.06.2018 00:49

Turkey's presidential and parliamentary elections are to be held on June 24 whereas the Bavarian state election in Germany will be held on 14 October 2018. Yesterday was World Refugee Day. Currently, the number of Syrian refugees in Turkey is more than the total number of refugees across the EU. Of course, Turkey has witnessed several anti-refugee election speeches. However, the Syrian refugees do not have any effect on the election results in Turkey. Not a single campaign focusing on the refugee problem has been made, and not a single placard on refugees has been seen. There are no politicians attempting to use the refugee issue as a tool for blackmailing. Such occasional attempts have been thwarted by the entire nation. In a nutshell, the refugees and immigrants in Turkey are not disdained or marginalized. Turkey is not a wealthy country, so it is not an easy task for Turkey to meet the expenses of the refugees. Despite that, Turkish people sympathize with the condition of the refugees. Everyone agrees on the point that the refugees will return to their homeland one day. But no one suggests deporting them as long as the chaos in Syria continues.

The situation is different for the refugees in Germany. As I wrote above, the Bavarian state election will be held on October 14. But the campaigns focusing on the issue of refugees have already started.

In Germany, the crisis has been stirred by the Christian Social Union in Bavaria (CSU) although it was predicted that the troublemaker of this term would be the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), whose vote share declined to around 15 percent in the federal coalition government formed by the CSU, SPD and the Christian Democratic Union (CDU). Horst Seehofer, the former CSU chair and the incumbent German Minister of Interior, is blackmailing Chancellor Angela Merkel by using the refugee issue as a pretext since he is concerned that the CSU might lose against the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) in the Bavarian state election. As can be seen, the refugees are being used as a tool for blackmailing. To that end, the CSU got into the act as it believed that displaying a far more xenophobic stance will help them win against the AfD. Although Merkel

stands against the demands to deport refugees, which is an idea disgracing all kinds of human rights and EU values, her party has already left Merkel alone since many CDU members are supporting Seehofer's views as opposed to Merkel's. The chancellor is being undermined due to her ethical approach to the refugee challenge.

Merkel was offered time to agree to a new EU migration policy by Seehofer until the EU Leaders Summit to be held towards the end of June. Yes, you did not misread. The interior minister gave the chancellor time to strike an EU migration deal. If Merkel does not come up with a joint solution with the EU within this period, Seehofer will begin deporting refugees despite Merkel. Also, it is important to note that Seehofer enjoys considerable public support in Germany.

Over the past weeks, the German media has been busy with lynching German football player of Turkish descent Mesut Özil for meeting the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. And currently, it is time to lynch Merkel. All these developments are alarming. Germany's trajectory is raising concerns with the world's public. Endeavoring to stop this state of affairs, Merkel hopes to find a solution that can be jointly applied within the EU by meeting with the French President Emmanuel Macron. In fact, seeking a joint solution is much more depressing since Merkel seeks to issue a decision that will cause the deportation of all the refugees across the EU alongside Germany.

In brief, the situation of the refugees is very grave. Today, it seems that no one objecting to their deportation has remained and the debates are focusing on how to deport them.

Yesterday, I was a guest speaker in a TV program broadcast by Germany-based Phoenix TV. Our subject matter was the upcoming elections in Turkey. As I expressed during the broadcast, Germany must focus on the values it is about to lose, instead of lecturing on the Turkish elections.

Despite the upcoming elections, the refugees are peacefully co-existing with citizens in the country ruled by Erdoğan, who is subjected to rigorous diatribes in Germany and whose victory is attempted to be hampered.

Evidently, it would be more useful for the German democrats to focus on the alarming problems in Germany rather than engaging in self-deception and claiming that they are looking to save the democracies of other countries.

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