Merkel warns Germany could ban Turkish campaign events

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German Chancellor Merkel makes a speech during the session "Global Responsibilities in a Digital Age" in the Swiss mountain resort of Davos.Picture: Reuters

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday warned that Germany could ban future campaign events by Turkish politicians on its soil unless Ankara stopped “Nazi” jibes aimed at Berlin.

Merkel stressed that such insults must stop — “no ifs, no buts” — and that Germany reserved the right to “take all necessary measures, including reviewing the permissions” for campaign events it had already granted.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the weekend accused Merkel of using “Nazi measures” after German local and state authorities had stopped several campaign events, citing logistical reasons, that were aimed at promoting support for an April 16 referendum on expanding Erdogan’s powers.

A stern-faced Merkel said Monday that such comments were “breaking every taboo, without consideration for the suffering of those who were persecuted and murdered” by the Nazis.

Raising the issue at the start of a joint press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, she stressed that “appearances by Turkish politicians here can only take place on the basis of the principles of German constitutional law”.

-AFP

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