BERLIN (AP) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Germany Friday on a short visit overshadowed by the two countries’ very different stances on the war between Israel and Hamas.
Erdogan was welcomed by Germany’s largely ceremonial president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, ahead of an evening meeting with Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Scholz invited Erdogan to visit in May following his re-election.
Turkey has long been viewed as an awkward but essential partner in Germany, which is home to more than 3 million people with Turkish roots. It’s a NATO ally that also is important in efforts to control the flow of refugees and migrants to Europe, an issue on which Scholz faces intense domestic pressure, but there have been tensions in recent years over a variety of issues.
This visit is overshadowed by a growing chasm between the two countries’ stances on events following Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel.
Germany is a staunch ally of Israel and has opposed calls for a cease-fire, while pushing for aid to civilians in Gaza,