Dutch-Turkish tension intesifies

Tension between the Dutch and Turkish governments has continued to grow on Saturday.

Following the banning of the Turkish cabinet from the Netherlands, as well as the cancellation of pro-referendum rallies across the country, Turkish President Erdogan released a statement, saying that the Dutch envoy “should not return for some time” and “stay away from Ankara.”

The statement comes at the same time as the detainment of the Turkish Family Minister in Rotterdam, where she was stopped 30 metres from the Turkish consulate after arriving in the country by land. The Minister decided to visit the consulate after the Foreign Minister was denied permission to land.

Minister Cavusoglu had already banned from the country before Saturday, but announced that as Foreign Minister, he should be allowed to go wherever he wants. As Turkey threatened sanctions against the Netherlands should they not let him land, Prime Minister Rutte announced that the flight would indeed not be permitted to land. Responding at the “lack of diplomacy,” Erdogan stated that the government was a “Nazi remnant,” calling them fascists.

Cavusoglu’s flight was then diverted to France.

The cancellation of the rallies come as Turkey’s European relationships have soured following the failed July coup, and Erdogan’s increasingly powerful position in Turkey, and as hopes for Turkey’s admittance into the E.U. are disappearing.

As the situation developed, the Turkish government sealed off the Dutch consulate and embassy in Turkey, with protests growing outside the Turkish consulate in the Netherlands.

The two countries are members of NATO.

On early Sunday morning, Dutch riot police were forced to break up a pro-Erdogan rally outside the Turkish consulate, as reports came in that the Family Minister was escorted to the German border.

(Image: NU.nl/ Joris Peters and Lise Witteman)

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