BERLIN (Reuters) - The Turkish people want the death penalty restored and those governing the country must listen to them, President Tayyip Erdogan said, despite European officials saying such a move would immediately stop Ankara’s EU accession process.
“What do the (Turkish) people say today?” Erdogan asked during an interview with German television station ARD that was broadcast on Monday.
“They want the death penalty reintroduced. And we as the government must listen to what the people say. We can’t say ‘no, that doesn’t interest us.’”
Earlier, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said that if Turkey reintroduces the death penalty - something the government has said it must consider, responding to calls from supporters at public rallies for coup leaders to be executed - it would stop the EU accession process immediately.
Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Tom Brown