Turkey defender Merih Demiral facing calls for UEFA ban over 'banned gesture linked to far-right extremist group' with probe launched after Euro 2024 win against Austria

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  • The 'wolf salute' is associated pinch nan Grey Wolves and banned successful Austria 
  • Merih Demiral performed a motion aft scoring successful Turkey's triumph connected Tuesday
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By Daniel Davis

Published: 06:38 EDT, 3 July 2024 | Updated: 06:57 EDT, 3 July 2024

Turkey defender Merih Demiral is nether investigation by UEFA aft allegedly performing a motion linked to a far-right extremist group.

Demiral scored doubly successful his country's 2-1 triumph against Austria successful nan Euro 2024 last-16 past night, booking them a quarter-final gathering pinch nan Netherlands.

But nan 26-year-old's arguable ceremony aft his 2nd extremity has prompted a probe by nan governing assemblage complete alleged 'inappropriate behaviour'.

The centre back, who is now astatine consequence of a ban, is accused of performing a 'Wolf's Salute', an enactment associated pinch nan Grey Wolves, a far-right extremist group successful Turkey.

The Grey Wolves, officially called Ulku Ocaklari, is nan younker activity of nan Nationalist Movement Party - which is successful conjugation pinch Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party.

Turkey defender Merih Demiral is nether investigation by UEFA and could look a suspension for allegedly performing a motion linked to far-right extremist group Grey Wolves

Demiral scored some Turkey's goals successful their 2-1 triumph against Austria successful nan Euro 2024 last-16

Supporters of nan group are considered extremists by Germany's Constitutional Protection Agency, arsenic good arsenic nan European Union and nan United States.

The motion allegedly performed by Demiral is banned successful France and Austria. 

The prohibition was introduced successful Austria successful 2019 aft a rule prohibiting 'extremist organisation' symbols was passed. The motion tin consequence successful fines of up to €4,000.

But successful 2019, Turkey's authorities criticised Austria's stance, claiming nan prohibition equated a awesome of a ineligible governmental statement pinch that of nan PKK, a Kurdish militant activity considered a violent organisation by Turkey, nan US and nan EU.

After nan match, Demiral explained why he had performed nan gesture.

'I had a circumstantial ceremony successful mind, thing connected to my Turkish identity. I americium incredibly proud to beryllium Turkish, and I felt that pridefulness profoundly aft scoring,' he said.

Demiral headed location his 2nd extremity from a area earlier performing nan 'wolf' gesture

The motion allegedly performed by Demiral (left) is banned successful France and Austria

Nancy Faeser, Germany's Minister of Interior and Home Affairs, has called for a UEFA ban

'I wanted to definitive that, and I'm very happy I did. Our fans are proud of us. I saw them doing nan motion successful nan stands, and it made maine want to do it moreover more.'

Germany's Minister of Interior and Home Affairs, Nancy Faeser, has urged UEFA to see sanctions and deed retired astatine nan alleged gesture.

'The symbols of Turkish right-wing extremists person nary spot successful our stadiums,' Faeser posted connected X, formerly Twitter, connected Wednesday morning. 'Using nan European Football Championship arsenic a level for racism is wholly unacceptable.'

A connection from UEFA confirmed an investigation had been opened 'in accordance pinch Article 31(4) of nan UEFA Disciplinary Regulations successful narration to nan alleged inappropriate behaviour of nan Turkish Football Federation player, Merih Demiral.'

UEFA's Safety and Security regulations authorities 'the promotion aliases announcement aliases governmental messages aliases different governmental actions wrong aliases successful nan contiguous vicinity of nan stadium is strictly prohibited before, during and after' matches.

Mail Sport has contacted UEFA and nan Turkish FA for comment.

UEFA are besides presently investigating nan X-rated motion Jude Bellingham made aft scoring England's equaliser successful their 2-1 triumph against Slovakia connected Sunday. 

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