German outrage after football stars pose with Turkish President Erdogan


"That's why it's not good that our worldwide players let themselves be manipulated for his electoral campaign".

Mr Erdogan faces re-election next month and has been accused of using his 3-day visit to the United Kingdom to campaign for the votes of expatriate Turks.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Israel of using unnecessary aggression in Syria and blamed Tel Aviv for pushing the entire region toward full-scale war, Sputnik reported.

"It is distasteful and embarrassing for football millionaires to be harnessed to the election campaign of an authoritarian ruler and to pay homage to him".

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Mr Erdogan received signed shirts from the two German-born players, both of Turkish origin.

The World Cup begins next month in Russian Federation, and both Germans will likely start for the defending champions. "In doing that, our players have certainly not helped the DFB's work on integration".

DFB team coordinator Oliver Bierhoff said: "I still have absolutely no doubts about Mesut and Ilkay's commitment to playing for the Germany national team and how much they identify with our values. They were unaware of the symbolism of these pictures, but we can not endorse it, and we will discuss the matter with the players".

"The worldwide community must do its part as soon as possible and take swift action to put an end to Israel's increasing aggression", he went on.