Erdoğan says Macron in need of ‘mental treatment’ over stance on Muslims

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Saturday condemned his French counterpart over his hostility towards Islam and Muslims, saying that Emmanuel Macron was in need of “mental treatment,” Sözcü newspaper reported.

Erdoğan said Macron lacked an understanding of freedom of belief, which was reflected in his treatment of Muslims in France.

“What is Macron’s problem with Islam and Muslims? He needs mental health treatment,” the Turkish president said during a congress of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in Turkey’s central Kayseri province.

“What can be said toa head of state that treats millions of members of a religious minority in his country this way? First of all, (Macron is in need of) a mental check,” he added.

Earlier this month, Macron announced a plan to defend France’s secular values against what he termed as “Islamist radicalism,”saying the religion was “in crisis” all over the world. The French president’s remarks have prompted a backlash in the Muslim world, with Erdoğan labelling them  "a dangerous provocation.’’

Macron’s plan includes presenting a bill in December to strengthen a 1905 law that officially separated church and state in France.

Erdoğan also accused German police of “fascism” over a mosque in German capital Berlin on Wednesday.

“European fascism reaches a new level with such attacks on their own citizens,” the Turkish president said.

Ankara has condemned the Berlin police’s raid on the Mevlana Mosque during morning prayers, prompted by a fraud investigation.