Germany, Turkey seek reconciliation as foreign ministers hold meeting

Foreign ministers of Germany and Turkey on Saturday held meeting in the German city Goslar, in a bid to seek reconciliation after two years of tensions.

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel welcomed his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu to Goslar in north Germany, Gabriel’s hometown.

At a joint press conference after the meeting, Cavusoglu described Gabriel as a “personal friend,” and Germany and

Turkey as two “proud” nations, while the German top diplomat announced the revival of a joint economy commission which had been suspended amid the diplomatic spat.

Gabriel said the two officials intended to do everything possible to “find more common ground in the future.”

Germany-Turkey ties are burdened after the aborted coup in Turkey in July 2016, with Ankara accusing Berlin of giving asylum to dissidents, while Berlin worrying about democratic backward in Turkey.

Erdogan had accused German Chancellor Angela Merkel of “Nazi methods” in 2017 because several election campaign appearances of Turkish politicians in Germany had been banned before the constitutional referendum on the introduction of a presidential system in Turkey.

Germany was especially angry with the detainment of the Die Welt reporter Deniz Yucel, who has been held 10 months in jail without an indictment.

“I can only say that we talked about all topics, including the difficult ones,” he said, answering a question on Yucel. “He is definitely one of them.”

Gabriel also denied recent reports that Berlin was considering halting a delivery of military equipment to Turkey as a means to pressure Ankara to release its prisoners.