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Wulff wins praise for bridge-building speech

The Local · 20 Oct 2010, 08:43

Published: 20 Oct 2010 08:43 GMT+02:00

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Leaders were impressed by Wulff’s carefully chosen words on Tuesday that aimed to build bridges with Turkey while also reminding the predominantly Muslim nation of its obligations to protect its own religious minorities such as Christians and Jews.

Education Minister Schavan, meanwhile, sought to drag the recent, acrid debate about the integration of Germany’s Muslim communities onto more constructive territory, insisting the news was not all bad.

“Integration is also a success story in Germany,” she told the Passauer Neue Presse. “We should speak about that more and with greater confidence.”

The remarks followed a weekend speech by Angela Merkel in which the chancellor declared that multiculturalism had “completely failed” and calls by Bavarian Premier Horst Seehofer for Germany to consider ending immigration from Muslim nations.

President Wulff also won applause in Turkey. The country’s President Abdullah Gül described himself after the speech as president also for the Christians in Turkey.

Greens parliamentary leader Jürgen Trittin described Wulff’s address to the Turkish parliament as “an important speech.”

The head of the Turkish Community in Germany, Kenan Kolat, was also full of praise.

“The President has spoken out for a close business and scientific co-operation with Turkey. He has made clear that Islam is compatible with democracy. And with his emphasis on Turkey’s role as a bridge (between east and west), he has established the foundation for the country’s entry to the European Union,” Kolat told the Berliner Zeitung.

He called on Wulff to now meet also with Turkish community representatives in Germany.

The Central Council of Muslims in Germany also reacted positively.

Chairman Aiman Mazyek told the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung that Wulff’s words had been “cleverly chosen.”

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He contrasted the integration debate in Germany with that of the religious minorities in Turkey: “Just as Turkish Christians are regarded as a danger for the country’s unity by ultranationalists, the right-wing in Germany sees behind every Muslim the downfall of the Christian West.”

The head of Turkish Studies and Integration Research at Essen University, Haci Halil Uslucan, praised the way Wulff had stressed the common ground between Germans and Turks, rather than “letting an unnecessary distance arise between the majority and minority.”

DAPD/The Local/dw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:37 October 20, 2010 by Edin
Angie really messed this one up... If you are getting into such emtional field and making statements about large groups of people you must have some rock-solid arguments. People are not so stupid anymore not to reckognize the racial, national or even sentimental manipulation. Wulff was in the other hand spot on, precise, concise with clear targets, arguments and target… What more to say than, Angie, your time in this arena is coming to an end, and for good it is.
12:17 October 20, 2010 by bestman
¦quot;Integration is also a success story in Germany" and other fantasies courtesy of the politically correct and disingenuous party elite. Try walking around Moabit or Kreuzberg in Berlin sometime Frau Schavan. Well perhaps not by yourself. A Berlin senator was recently quoted as saying "It appears that law enforcement officials are now regarded as interlopers" in parts of the city.
13:46 October 20, 2010 by William Thirteen
oh that's ridiculous - I work in Moabit every friggin day and it is a vibrant, diverse community.

Amusingly i was asked by a couple of young Turkish kids the other day about the Porsche owned by our Geschaefstfuehrer. They wanted to know what kind of company we were and what they would have to study in university in order to work in this field. Then, taking pity on my poor German skills, they switched to English which they spoke better than many of my German coworkers!

All around this neighborhood I see immigrants of all nationalities working hard to get ahead. In fact, the only folks i see lounging in the park or in the kneipe, beer in hand at ten in the morning are German.
14:03 October 20, 2010 by Johnne
@William Thirteen,

thank you very much for the comment. God bless you very much as well! may u walk without fear, and the spirit of good immigrants, the power of African vodoo shall protect you without you even caring about it or believing it. God bless you.
14:42 October 20, 2010 by giltedged
This unelected buffoon, the arch-typical appeaser of Islam, is bound to gladden Muslims.
15:08 October 20, 2010 by bestman
The power of African voodoo and the fairies that play in the woods will protect William equally well. But if he goes out after dark in certain sections of Berlin he better keep a sharp eye out as well.
18:00 October 20, 2010 by William Thirteen
are you kidding me? the criminality and violence here in Germany is nothing compared with that back in the US. The biggest danger in most parts of Berlin is old ladies reading you the riot act if you cross against the light. But hey, don't let the facts get in the way of your heated imagination!
18:20 October 20, 2010 by michael4096
@W13 - you are correct - imagination can play funny tricks on the drive from the airbase to the nearest sex shop
20:38 October 20, 2010 by wxman
The article's title needs a little work - - "Wulff wins praise for sucking up to Muslim invaders". There, fixed it.
21:09 October 20, 2010 by giltedged

Let's just call him the Unelected Mohhy Appeaser. Now the onus is on us to kick out these appeasers.
22:39 October 20, 2010 by bestman
Conrad Freiberg, chaiman of the Berlin police union, said the statistics don't tell the whole story. "More and more often police officers run into uninhibited brutal violence," he said. Nothing was mentioned about old ladies and traffic lights.
16:34 October 21, 2010 by William Thirteen
that's because Freiberg, as befits his role as the chairman of the police union, has a vested interest scaring up more and more cash for his union members and the department they work for. And while i applaud his efforts on behalf of his dues paying members, I also take his comments with a pinch of salt.

I take it that you don't live in Berlin?
11:21 October 22, 2010 by raandy
With all the bashing about the failure of multiculturalaism from the top on down ,I find his speach a breath of fresh air.
20:41 October 22, 2010 by Brugge
Thelocal is a very biased report.
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