Germany says no knowledge of Erdoğan rally on their soil

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German Foreign Ministry Spokesman Martin Schaefer

The spokesperson for the German ministry of foreign affairs said on Friday that they have not received any information regarding a rally by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to be held in Germany in the run-up to an April 16 referendum in Turkey that will introduce an executive presidency to the country.

Martin Schaefer said in Berlin that German authorities have not been notified of any visit by Erdoğan prior to April 16 or in the foreseeable future.

The German Bild daily recently claimed that Erdoğan would hold a rally in the heavily Turkish-populated state of North-Rhine Westphalia in March to ask for support for a constitutional reform package that will be put to a public vote on April 16.

Bild based its report on the statement of a high-level bureaucrat in Ankara whose name it did not reveal.

The bureaucrat told the daily that Erdoğan would explain the executive presidency to Turks in Germany at a rally in North-Rhine Westphalia but that the exact location of the rally was not yet clear.

Turkey currently has a parliamentary system of governance. Many fear that an executive presidency will create one-man rule and end the separation of powers.

The reform will enable Erdoğan to appoint and dismiss government ministers, take back the leadership of the ruling party and govern until 2029.

The plans foresee presidential and general elections in 2019, with a maximum of two five-year terms.

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