Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, reaffirms the solidarity of all Europeans with the Netherlands in its diplomatic conflict with fellow NATO ally Turkey during a speech at the European Parliament on 15 March 2017.
Haaretz reports: Dutch Deport Turkish Minister After Standoff With Police
The Netherlands and Turkey were involved in a diplomatic row this week regarding political campaigning in Rotterdam's large Turkish minority neighborhoods ahead of elections in both countries. When Turkey's foreign minister was not allowed to travel to Rotterdam, the country's president Erdogan lashed out, saying that those in the Dutch government were "Nazi remnants." Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte called Erdogan's Nazi comment "a crazy remark."
The Guardian reports: Racism in Rotterdam: how a diverse city got infected with Islamophobia
"Rotterdam. The city of Erasmus, brutally destroyed by the Nazis, which today has mayor born in Morocco. If anyone sees fascism in Rotterdam, they are completely detatched from reality," Tusk said in response to Erdogan at the European Council on Wednesday. That afternoon, Erdogan ordered that the "twin city" agreement between Istanbul and Rotterdam was cancelled.
Via Associated Press:
Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency says Istanbul's municipality has canceled a protocol that had declared Istanbul and Rotterdam twin cities.
The announcement came soon after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a televised address that he had given instructions for the twinning agreement to be scrapped, saying it was impossible for the two cities to be "twins" following the weekend's standoff between Dutch police and a Turkish minister in Rotterdam.
Anadolu Agency said the city assembly voted unanimously to end the twinning protocol that was signed in 2005.
Meanwhile, the Turkish members of a Turkish-Dutch parliamentary friendship group resigned from the joint committee, legislator Mustafa Elitas said.
The government had said Monday that it would recommend that the Turkish legislators leave the grouping as part of a series of political sanctions imposed against the Netherlands.
The Netherlands is holding a Parliamentary election today in which Prime Minister Mark Rutte faces a challenge from Geert Wilders of the anti-Islam Party for Freedom.