Germany wary of Turkish PM’s campaign visit

BERLIN (AP) — German officials are urging Turkey’s prime minister to avoid controversy when he visits Germany for an unofficial campaign appearance this weekend.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan hasn’t yet announced that he is running in August’s Turkish presidential election, but his appearance before Turkish expatriates in the western German city of Cologne on Saturday is widely considered a stump stop.

German government spokesman Steffen Seibert said Monday that in light of the European elections the next day, and the tense domestic situation in Turkey following the deadly mining disaster there, Erdogan should act with “responsibility and sensitivity” during his visit.

About 1.5 million Turks in Germany are eligible to vote in Turkey’s presidential election and anti-Erdogan protests are expected. Germany has agreed to allow voting to take place in several large sports venues.

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