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Netherlands 'will pay price' for banning Turkey's ministers, warns Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has escalated a diplomatic row with the Netherlands saying he appropriately accused the Dutch government of "Nazism and fascism".

The diplomatic spat between the two countries showed no sign of abating after a Turkish minister was escorted out of the country as persona non grata.

That development came less than 24 hours after Turkey's foreign minister was denied entry, prompting Mr Erdogan to call the Dutch "Nazi remnants".

The stand-off was over plans by Turkish government officials to campaign in the Netherlands for a referendum back home.

In a live televised address on Sunday, Mr Erdogan warned that the Netherlands would "pay the price" for sacrificing its ties with a Nato ally to upcoming elections there.

He also said Turkey would retaliate for the ousting of the Turkish family affairs minister from the Netherlands.

"I have said that I had thought that Nazism was over, but that I was wrong. Nazism is alive in the West."

The president thanked France, which allowed Turkey's foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu to address Turkish citizens in the city of Metz on Sunday.

But Mr Cavusoglu also warned of "repercussions" against the Netherlands and said an "apology was not enough".

Noting that Ankara had already barred the Dutch ambassador from returning to Turkey, he said : "We have other steps in mind. We've already begun planning them. We will certainly take those steps and more."

Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Betul Sayan Kaya had arrived in the country from Germany but was prevented from entering Turkey's diplomatic compound in Rotterdam, setting up an extraordinary stand-off with armed police. She was later sent under escort back to Germany.

As she was approaching the German border, Ms Kaya wrote: "The whole world must take action against this fascist practice! Such a treatment against a woman minister cannot be accepted."

The Dutch were equally angry and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte called Mr Erdogan's Nazi comment "a crazy remark".

He said he was forced to take action because Ankara had threatened sanctions against his government.

"We can never do business under this kind of blackmail," Mr Rutte said on Sunday.

However protests over the ban grew with one man in Istanbul climbing onto the roof of the Dutch consulate and replacing the Netherlands' flag with the Turkish one.

In Rotterdam, police said they arrested 12 protesters as a demonstration outside the Turkish consulate descended into rioting.


Mr Erdogan called on international organisations to "raise their voices" against the Netherlands.

In a campaign rally on Sunday before the referendum on expanding the powers of his office, Mr Erdogan also urged international organisations to impose sanctions on the Netherlands.



From Belfast Telegraph