"The Roman Empire, before it collapsed, too, paid tribute money to barbarians [for them not to pilfer its territory]," Zaman claimed, adding that Turkey usually acts like a Daesh ally rather than that of the West, despite being a NATO member.
Zeman explained his stance, arguing that Turkey can accommodate Syrian refugees on the grounds that majorities of populations in both nations have a common religion – Islam — and there is no cultural barrier between accepting and receiving sides.
“The danger does not rest in Islam as such but in transferring these [Muslim] habits to Europe,” he pointed out.
President Zeman also said that Brussels must regard Ankara with "caution," underscoring that Turkey is not purely a European nation and, considering this, shouldn’t be treated like every other EU country.
According to PJ Media outlet, Geert Wilders, the head of Dutch far-right party (PVV) that has led the polls in the Netherlands for several months in a row, sticks to a similar position. He reiterated that even not radical Muslims moving to Europe bring their beliefs — which are not westernized and not enlightened enough – there.
Earlier in November, Ankara inked a deal with Brussels suggesting that Turkey will assist in tackling the flow of migrants to Europe in return for €3 billion package and the revival of negotiations on the country joining the EU.