Turkey welcomes Merkel's multiculturalism comments

Published 19.10.2010 13:27

Turkey's foreign minister says he hopes the German president's recent comments about Islam now being part of Germany will help reduce xenophobia in that country.

ANKARA, Turkey - Ahmet Davutoglu was speaking in Kuwait Monday hours before German President Christian Wulff begins a five-day visit to Turkey.

Wulff sparked a debate in Germany by saying "Islam now also belongs to Germany" in a speech marking 20 years of country's reunification.

Davutoglu said Wulff's comments should pave the way for co-operation between Muslims and Christians in Germany. His comments were carried by the state-run Anatolia news agency.

Germany has long been home to a large Turkish community and their integration is expected to loom large during talks.

Wulff will become the first German president to address Turkey's parliament on Tuesday.

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