Turkey - France relations deteriorate drastically after Tayyip Erdogan recommends mental checkup for French President
The development follows Turkish President Erdogan's harsh reaction towards new measures that his French counterpart announced in response to the beheading of a school teacher by a Muslim refugee for showing Prophet Muhammad cartoons to pupils in a Paris suburb.
On Saturday, Paris recalled its ambassador to Turkey after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, has to undergo "mental checks" because of his treatment of "millions of members" of France's Muslim community.
"President Erdogan's comments are unacceptable. Outrage and insult are not a method," Macron's office said in a statement, following heated address by the Turkish president.
A French presidential official, who did not disclose his name, described Erdogan's rant in a comment to AFP as "excess and rudeness," adding that Paris demands that Erdogan "change the course of his policy because it is dangerous in every respect."
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The official also said that Paris had noted "the absence of messages of condolence and support" in the wake of the brutal murder of teacher Samuel Paty.
Erdogan delivered his fiery remarks about Macron in Turkey's central Anatolian city of Kayseri on Saturday. Speaking in a televised address, the Turkish president condemened his French counterpart for injust treatment of Muslims, highlighting that Macron needs mental treatment.
"What can one say about a head of state who treats millions of members from different faith groups this way: first of all, have mental checks," Erdogan stressed. "What's the problem of the individual called Macron with Islam and with the Muslims?"
Macron has called Islam a religion "in crisis" directing the French government to come up with a new legislation to bolster a 1905 law separating church and state in the country.
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*'Have Mental Checks': Turkey’s Erdogan Slams France's Macron Over Treatment of Muslims*
Macron previously stated that Paris would stay strong against the Islamist threat after a schoolteacher was gruesomely decapitated by an 18-year old immigrant for showing caricatures depicting the Islamic Prophet Muhammad to his students.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has criticised French counterpart Emmanuel Macron for his policies toward Muslims.
"What can one say about a head of state who treats millions of members from different faith groups this way: first of all, have mental checks", Erdogan said.
In the wake of the teacher's murder in Paris, the French head of state promised to impose better control over foreign funding of mosques and schools. He also described Islam as a religion "in crisis" worldwide and noted that the government will impose stricter secular policies.
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Last week, France was shaken when Samuel Paty was beheaded by an 18-year-old man of Chechen origin in a Paris suburb after he showed cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad to his students. The suspect was shot dead by police officers the same day. An investigation into the fatal incident is underway.
Following the murder, a draft law seeking to prohibit the justification of a crime due to ethnic or religious motives on constitutional grounds, was passed to the French Senate. Addressing the bill, Erdogan said that "the main goal of such initiatives led by Macron is to settle old scores with Islam and Muslims".