German FM: "The US's doors should remain open to Turkey"
Amid calls from European far-right parties for a Europe-wide referendum on Turkey's eventual EU membership, over the weekend German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle reiterated his firm support for Turkey's bid to join the 27-member bloc. Speaking in Berlin, Westerwelle said, "Those who close the EU door to Turkey today without thinking will miss a historic opportunity. My stance on Turkey's EU membership bid is very clear: Pacts must be respected." Urging a fair and honest treatment of Turkey's accession process, Westerwelle said, "What is in question here is a proud and dynamic country. Turkey remaining a Europe-oriented country makes a great deal of sense for us." In related news, in an address marking the 60th anniversary of the Christian Democrat Union (CDU), the leader of Germany's three-party coalition government, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who recently said that German's efforts to build a multicultural society have failed, claimed that the identity, culture and religion of German society are under threat.