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Ankara summons Austria envoy over age of consent

Relations between Ankara and Vienna have taken a dive in recent days

Published: Updated:

Turkey's foreign ministry has summoned the Austrian charge d'affaires in protest at what it said was a “false” news ticker at Vienna airport about the age of consent, further damaging ties between the two countries.

Ankara voiced fury at the headline broadcast on screens at the airport which said Turkey allowed sex with children under the age of 15.

“This headline tarnishes the image of Turkey, and is false,” a Turkish diplomat said after the Austrian envoy was summoned to the ministry on Saturday.

The Turkish constitutional court last month ruled in favor of removing an article in the criminal code which characterizes all sexual acts with a child of less 15 years as “sexual abuse”.

Relations between Ankara and Vienna have taken a dive in recent days, with several Austrian ministers speaking out against Turkey's longstanding bid to join the European Union, particularly in the wake of the massive purge that followed the July 15 coup bid.

Austrian Defense Minister Hans-Peter Doskozil has compared Turkey to a “dictatorship”, while Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu decried Austria as the “capital of radical racism”.

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