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Turkey rejects Macron's claim of possible vote interference

French President Emmanuel Macron says that Ankara could seek to interfere in France’s next election by manipulating public opinion.

Allegations are concerned that Turkey may interfere with the upcoming elections in France.

With the upcoming regional elections in France, President Emmanuel Macron made a strange claim.


Turkey rejected French President Emmanuel Macron’s suggestions that Ankara could seek to interfere in France’s next election by manipulating public opinion.

In an interview with France 5 television, Macron accused Turkey and Turkish state media of engaging in a “policy of lies” and of portraying France as having a “problem with Islam.”

“Obviously, by manipulating public opinion ... there would be attempts to interfere with the next election,” Macron said.

France is scheduled to hold a presidential election next year. The unfortunate statement came despite efforts by Turkey to ease tense relations that hit a low point after France implemented Islamophobic regulations.

The two countries have sparred over other issues, including a dispute over energy rights in the eastern Mediterranean and Turkey’s military intervention in Libya.

The two leaders held a video conference earlier this month, however, in a bid to end the friction.

Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hami Aksoy released a statement calling Macron’s claims “dangerous” and said Turkey’s only interest in French domestic politics concerned the well-being of Turks who lived in France.

“We find the claim made by Mr. Macron in such decisive terms ... to be alienating toward foreign communities in the country and thus dangerous in this aspect,” Aksoy said.

“Turkey has no agenda regarding France’s interior politics apart from the welfare, peace and harmony of the 800,000-strong Turkish community living in that country,” he said.

Aksoy also expressed disappointment that Macron made the comments at a time when France and Turkey were taking steps to ensure that "tensions make way for calm and friendship.”

“We would like to remind France that Turkey will reciprocate any positive or negative stance or statements in the same way,” he said.

Is Macron afraid of refugees?

On the contrary of his allegations, Macron emphasized that the dialogue with Turkey still needed to be done, because NATO member Turkey is an important trade partner, especially on the issue of migration.

French President Macron says: "For Europe, Turkey is an important ally. EU countries must work with Turkey. Turkey is a crucial ally on the migration issue. Otherwise, Turkey could open its borders straightaway, if the EU says 'we will no longer work with you'."