Germany has warned Turkey. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Chancellor Angela Merkel of using Nazi measures.
Germany said that Turkey had gone too far with the accusations. The diplomatic argument between both countries is intensifying.
The European Union and Turkey have been stuck in a fiery crisis. The crisis will have a negative effect on Turkey’s bid to join the EU.
Tensions are increasing in Turkey. The country is expected to hold a vote on the 16th of April. The referendum is meant to expand Erdogan’s powers.
The diplomatic conflict started after the German authorities and other EU states refused to allow some Turkish ministers to campaign.
The Turkish ministers wanted to campaign for a yes vote on the EU states. The move led to an explosive response from the Turkish President.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the spirit of Nazi Germany was rampant in Europe.
Erdogan said that when Turks call them Nazis, they get uncomfortable. He was referring to Europe. Erdogan was speaking in a televised speech on Sunday.
Erdogan was referring to Merkel when he said that they are employing Nazi measures. He said that Merkel was employing Nazi measures against his Turkish brothers in Germany who planned to hold campaign rallies for a yes vote in the referendum.
Sigmar Gabriel who is Germany’s Foreign Minister said that Erdogan’s comments were shocking. He also said that Germany is tolerant but not stupid.
The vice-president of Merkel’s CDU party, Julia Kloeckner also reacted by saying that Mr. Erdogan has lost his mind. She also urged the EU to freeze the financial aid amounting to billions of euros to Turkey.
Germany is home to 1.4 million Turkish voters. The country hosts the world’s largest Turkish diaspora.
The current diplomatic conflict has ruined the relationship between NATO allies, Turkey and Germany.
Turkey reacted angrily after a Frankfurt rally took place on Saturday. The rally was urging a no vote.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister accused the German authorities of being the worst example of double standards. He pointed out that Germany allowed the pro-Kurdish protest yet it prevented the Turkish ministers from campaigning.
Many of the protesters carried symbols of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). The party is listed as a terror organization by the EU, U.S. and also Turkey.
Turkey also reacted with anger after Germany’s Intelligence Chief said he was not convinced by Turkish claims that the US-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen was behind the failed July coup aimed at overthrowing Erdogan.
The diplomatic conflict has left Turkey’s ambition to join the EU hopeless as the referendum is around the corner.
Erdogan made matters worse when he said that he believed parliament would agree to pass a bill to restore capital punishment which he said that he would sign.
Erdogan made a clear warning that he could reverse the 2004 abolition of capital punishment.
The abolitions is a pre-condition for joining the EU.
The European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker warned that any return of the death penalty in Turkey would be a "red line". Gabriel told Der Spiegel said that Turkey is very far from agreeing with the EU.
The conflict is damaging Turkey’s relations with key EU members and Turkish-Dutch ties. Erdogan urged the Turks in Europe to have more children so that they can tilt the demographics.