Turkey's main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu called on the government to suspend ties with the Netherlands amid an escalating row over ban on Turkish ministers to attend rallies.
Speaking at a meeting in southern province of Adana, Kılıçdaroğlu said: "I call on to the government clearly and openly; talk is cheap, if a minister of the Republic of Turkey is not being allowed in to the Netherlands, if a minister of the Republic of Turkey is not being allowed into his/her own consulate or embassy, please suspend our relations with the Netherlands. We will give every kind of support," Kılıçdaroğlu said.
"This has nothing to do with the upcoming referendum, with "Yes" or "No." This a matter of national importance. With rightists or leftists, with party A or party B, defending Turkey's interests in the common duty of all political parties," Kılıçdaroğlu said, noting that the CHP also canceled all of its activities abroad as a sign of standing by the government in this issue.
"In diplomacy, it a rule for diplomats, ministers to have immunity. It is unacceptable for ministers of the Republic of Turkey from being prevented on their way to Germany, the Netherlands," he added.
As a retribution against Germany, which prevented Turkish ministers from holding meetings with Turkish citizens early in March, Kılıçdaroğlu pointed to the presence of German soldiers in Incirlik Airbase.
Following last week's bans in Germany preventing Turkish ministers from meeting Turks in living the country, the Netherlands prevented Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu's plane from landing in the country on Saturday. Family and Social Affairs Minister Fatma Betül Sayan Kaya was prevented from entering into the Turkish consulate general in Rotterdam and deported from the Netherlands later in the day, while the police forcefully dispersing Turkish protesters.
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