World Bulletin / News Desk
The remarks came after opposition lawmakers criticized Germany’s official invitation for Erdogan, who won Turkey’s landmark election last month.
“We are always interested in talks with Turkey, which is a close and important partner for us in many areas,” government’s deputy spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer told a news conference in Berlin, and she added that Chancellor Merkel was also interested in meeting Erdogan.
German daily Bild reported on Saturday President Frank-Walter Steinmeier invited his counterpart Erdogan for a state visit in late September.
Erdogan will be ceremonially welcomed with military honours at the presidential palace, and during his visit he will also address the Turkish community, the daily reported.
Besides his meeting with Steinmeier, who holds a largely ceremonial position, Erdogan was also scheduled to meet Chancellor Angela Merkel, to discuss bilateral ties and international issues.
Steinmeier’s office confirmed on Monday that Berlin had extended an official invitation to Erdogan for a state visit, but it did not give a date.
“An exact date for the visit has not been set yet,” a spokeswoman told local media.
Erdogan made his last official visit to Berlin in February 2014.
Political relations between Ankara and Berlin suffered several setbacks in recent years, but both sides took steps in the recent month towards normalization of ties.