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14 Mar 2017

“Shame on you Angela Merkel” says Erdogan

“Shame on you” and “this is totally unacceptable” are phrases that are expected between couples, but not between Angela Merkel and Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Turkish president said to journalists of A Haber television channel that the German Chancellor should be ashamed for supporting terrorism.

“Mrs. Merkel, why are you hiding terrorists in your country? Why are you not doing anything? Mrs. Merkel, you are supporting terrorists.” an angry Erdogan said and added that almost 4.500 dossiers sent by Ankara containing information on Kurdish terror suspects, have not resulted to extraditions. Erdogan didn’t lose the opportunity to attack the European Union on the matter of the financial aid that was arranged with the migration cooperation treaty, signed in March 2016. “EU promised €6bn of aid, but only €750m has been received so far. They have also led us up the garden path with promises of visa-free travel, which was supposed to be introduced at the end of last year, something that has not happened. “ said Erdogan, showing how much frustrated he is with the EU’s “dishonesty”.

The Turkish deputy prime minister Numan Kurtulmus told reporters that Europe has not kept its promises on the migrant deal and that the agreement has ended. An end to this deal means that Turkey is no longer obliged to keep migrants from various countries of Asia and Africa on its soil, a situation that might result in massive migration towards the EU countries. Angela Merkel called Erdogan’s accusations “completely absurd.” A spokesman for Merkel stated that “the chancellor has no intention of taking part in this kind of provocations.”

Angela Merkel, speaking in a convention of businessmen, said that ”Germany rejects any rhetorical or other comparison with the National Socialists made by the Turkish president. This rejection is also valid for our allies. Particularly in the Netherlands that endured so much agony, this it totally unacceptable. They can count on my complete support and solidarity on this.” The Dutch government seems to be getting the support that it needs in its confrontation with Turkey, that started over this weekend. The Dutch authorities denied Mevlut Cavusoglu’s entry in the country and expelled the Turkish Family minister, Fatma Kaya, to Germany. They both had plans of talking in front of Turkish immigrants in the Netherlands, to support Tayyip Erdogan’s constitutional reform referendum.

Turkish officials announced their plan for the ban of the Dutch ambassador and all diplomatic flights from the Netherlands, in response to the violation of human rights by the Dutch authorities. There doesn’t seem to be any measure against individual citizens, either economic or a travel restriction. The Dutch prime minister, Marc Rutte said that he finds the restrictions “not too bad” ,and that he finds it awkward that “Turkey is imposing sanctions when the Dutch have reasons to be angry.”

It is unclear how much an escalation in the diplomatic relationships between the two countries, can hurt the Turkish economy. The Netherlands is the biggest investor with almost $22bn of direct investment. A possible fallout in trade relations could lead Turkey to face recession.