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5 Mar, 2017 13:19

Erdogan compares German policy of blocking rallies of Turks to Nazis acts

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has slammed the German government, saying that its actions aimed at blocking rallies of Turkish nationals in Germany were ‘no different to those of the Nazi period.’

"Germany, you have no relation whatsoever to democracy and you should know that your current actions are no different to those of Nazi period. When we say that, they get disturbed. Why are you disturbed?" he was quoted by Reuters as saying at a rally in Istanbul on Sunday.

The Turkish leader’s comments follow the decision of the small German town of Gaggenau to withdraw the permit for Thursday’s rally, organized by the Union of European Turkish Democrats (UETD), a group close to Erdogan.

The city administration explained the move by saying that they were concerned with security at the event, adding that potential overflows inside its town hall and the parking lot outside were also a problem.

Shortly after the Gaggenau decision, Cologne also cancelled an UETD event, where Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci was due to speak on Sunday, also citing security concerns.

Erdogan had already commented on the cancellation of the Turkish rallies on Saturday, saying that those behind it “need to be put on trial for aiding and abetting terror.”

While preventing Turkish leaders from addressing their communities,” Germany has allowed “members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leaders to hold rallies,” the president said, as cited by Hurriyet Daily News.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel replied to the criticism from Ankara, saying that the federal government had nothing to do with decisions made solely by local authorities.