Ozil defends picture with Erdogan

Breaking his silence over the snapshot that caused outrage during the tournament, the Arsenal midfielder said in a statement on Twitter that he was loyal to both his Turkish and German origins and insisted he did not intend to make a political statement.

Ozil defends picture with Erdogan

World Bulletin / News Desk

Footballer Mesut Ozil said Sunday he had no regrets about his controversial photograph with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that sparked questions about his loyalty to Germany's national squad ahead of the World Cup.

"Like many people, my ancestry traces back to more than one country. Whilst I grew up in Germany, my family background has its roots firmly based in Turkey," he said.

"I have two hearts, one German and one Turkish."

Ozil said he had first met Erdogan in 2010 after the president and German Chancellor Angela Merkel watched a Germany-Turkey match together.

"Since then, our paths have crossed a lot of times around the globe," he said.

"I'm aware that the picture of us caused a huge response in the German media, and whilst some people may accuse me of lying or being deceitful, the picture we took had no political intentions."

Last Mod: 22 Temmuz 2018, 17:06
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