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'Sultan' Erdogan: 'Those Who Got to Know Him Should Fear for Europe'

© Flickr / rielaxIstanbul: view from Galata Tower
Istanbul: view from Galata Tower - Sputnik International
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's policy is increasingly moving away from "the democratic principles of the EU", German magazine Der Spiegel wrote.

Building of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Moscow's Smolenskaya-Sennaya Square - Sputnik International
Russian Foreign Ministry Urges Erdogan to Stop Human Rights Violations
This can be seen in the suppression of the opposition and the Turkish government's harsh criticism on Turkish and German journalists who made fun of the Turkish President in satirical videos and poems.

According to the magazine, Erdogan seems to perceive himself as an "invincible Sultan" who can do whatever he wants and infringe on any democratic rights in his country.

"Those who really got to know him should certainly fear for Europe," the magazine wrote.

The magazine referred to a number of recent arrests and attacks on Turkish journalists. One of them took place on March 4, when the Turkish police stormed into the editorial office of Turkish newspaper Zaman in Istanbul and virtually "forced" the newspaper to stop publishing critical articles and news.

In November 2015, two Turkish journalists from the newspaper Cumhuriyet Can Dundar and Erdem Gul were arrested after they published an article bringing to light MIT arms deliveries to Syria.

Turkey's crackdown on journalists and restrictions on freedom of speech have been severely criticized by the international community, but so far the situation has not changed for better. Moreover, Erdogan went further and tried to exert pressure on German media that blamed him for violating democratic principles and imposing restrictions on press freedom in Turkey.

Last week, the Turkish government summoned the German ambassador Martin Erdmann to express its criticism about a recent satirical video released by German TV Channel NDR and even asked him to remove it from the country's multimedia libraries.

According to Der Spiegel, this move once again demonstrated that Erdogan has a consciousness "of a sultan, not a democrat and that "in recent years Turkey has increasingly moved away from the values of the EU".

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