Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has compared a growing German anti-Islam movement to the terror group Islamic State (Isis).
In an interview with German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Davutoglu said that the Patriotic Europeans against the Islamisation of the West (Pegida) is "medieval". Pediga organises marches throughout Germany against what is perceived as the country's "Islamisation".
Davutoglu said: "When terror group [Isis] in Mosul destroyed churches, they declared that Mosul is an Islamic city and only for Muslims. That is the same logic used by Pegida to say that Germany only belongs to Christians. That is absolutely a medieval mentality."
Davutoglu, who was interviewed during a trip to Berlin, added that Turkey is "very worried about Pegida, not only a threat to Turkish people and Muslims, but also a threat to Germany itself".
Addressing all Muslims who live in Europe, he said: "You are not alone. Turkey is here to protect you."
Pegida is gaining thousands of followers every week. At least 25,000 people took part in the latest anti-Islam march, which took place in eastern Germany on Monday (12 January).
The organisation was created in October in retaliation to a plan to build 14 centres for roughly 2,000 refugees in Dresden and it has been criticised by many, who argued it is "dangerous" and could "tarnish Germany's reputation".
Lutz Bachmann, the founder of the movement, wrote on the group's official Facebook page: "We have stirred up a lot of dust and woken up a considerable part of the population. We have managed to awaken the silence in politics after 50 years on immigration issues, which were discussed only quietly in backrooms.
Pegida has taken steps to distance itself from neo-Nazi groups in the country. On its Facebook page it states that its aim is to ensure "German children can grow up in a cosmopolitan and friendly nation" and it "refuses to allow the spread of activities by groups such as [Islamic State] and al-Qaeda in Europe."
However, some fear the rallies are also drawing far-right supporters and sympathisers.