Rallies in two Dutch cities as visiting Turkish minister is deported
The Turkish Family and Social Affairs Minister was deported to Germany, after Dutch authorities declared her an "undesirable alien" and stopped her within 30m of the Turkish consulate in Rotterdam on Saturday.
Published: March 12, 2017, 6:39 pm
Dutch NOS correspondent Robert Bas reported that the minister rejected the request by Dutch police to leave the country, after police refused to let her address a mass rally.
Riots broke out and Dutch police had to deploy a watercannon against the angry crowd, FWM learned. Dutch authorities denied it and described the situation as “stable”. Crowds of Turkish protesters had stoned law enforcement, as RTV Rijnmond spoke of a massive police presence on Westblaak, Rotterdam.
A SWAT team from the Dutch police was also called in as riot police cordoned off the area. The Dienst Speciale Interventies (DSI) surrounded the consulate. In Amsterdam too, angry Turkish rioters gathered on Damrak, waving flags.
Minister Fatma Betul Sayan Kaya was detained by police, local media reported, after which she was given a police escort back to the German border. Kaya was denied entrance to the Turkish mission in Rotterdam, RTL News reported.
“I will go to the consulate building. That is a building belonging to my country and I am a minister of that country. There is no such international practice. I don’t accept that decision, I reject it and I won’t return to Germany,” the minister said according to the Saily Sabah newspaper before being detained by Rotterdam police.
“We were stopped at the Consulate General of Rotterdam 30 meters away and were not allowed to enter,” Kaya tweeted. “Netherlands is violating all international laws, conventions and human rights.” Kaya accused the Dutch of “tyranny and oppression” in denying her access to the building.
As her car came to a halt, and the minister realised she would not be entering the consulate, she got out and started screaming, a source told FWM. The minister had remained in her armored BMW until a truck arrived to tow the vehicle. She then stepped out and was escorted back to the border by helicoptered police convoy.
Rotterdam’s mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb told Dutch news agency NOS that Turkish embassy staff had “mislead” him on the forthcoming visit of Kaya. The mayor claimed that the Turkish consul general told him nothing had been planned for the day.
“He outright lied,” Aboutaleb said, and added that he was angered by the comparison of Dutch authorities to “fascists”. Dutch and German authorities called off her campaign meetings ahead of a Turkish referendum on constitutional amendments.
“Minister Kaya is on her way to Germany, accompanied by police. Her car is being driven back. This also applies to her guards and employees,” he said. Kaya’s meetings in the Netherlands were scheduled to take place in Hengelo, Enschede and Wehl as well as in Cologne, in Germany but were cancelled due to “security reasons”.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte issued a statement calling the visit of the Turkish minister “irresponsible” and the “Nazi” slurs by Turkish authorities “unacceptable”. Rutte said the Dutch government repeatedly told their Turkish counterparts that Kaya was “not welcome in the Netherlands”, alluding to why his government prevented her from staging a pro-Erdogan rally outside the diplomatic premises.
The Turkish premier accused the Dutch government of “violating all diplomatic and international rules” by disregarding the minister’s immunity in a statement Saturday.
Meanwhile the European Union cancelled some EU integration funding for Turkey because the country “is moving away from Europe,” European Neighborhood Policy EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn said.
“Turkey is moving not in the direction of Europe, but in the opposite direction. We are legally obliged to correlate financial support with the progress the country is making,” Hahn told DPA news agency.
He suggested that the Erdogan regime is ignoring “not only the EU standards but the international law as well”.
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