Turkey summons German envoy over 'pro-PKK rally scandal'

"That will be the best response to the injustices against you", President Erdogan said at a rally in the central Turkish city of Eskisehir.

In his Sunday speech, Erdogan accused Merkel personally of using Nazi methods against his "Turkish brother citizens in Germany and brother ministers".

The rocky campaign and talks of introducing a death penalty will undoubtedly cause long-term damage for ties between Turkey and European countries, and could end Ankara's efforts to join the EU.

"My demand that Turkey should stop Nazi comparisons remains in force, with no ifs or buts", Merkel told reporters at the CeBIT technology fair in Hanover.

The rallies are in support of a 16 April referendum on constitutional reforms, which if decided in Erdo─čan's way, would give him greater powers following last year's failed coup attempt. "To whom? To my Turkish brothers and sisters in Germany".

The Turkish diplomatic offensive against German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Germany is growing with increasingly heated tones, to which the German foreign minister responded: "Now a line has been crossed". The referendum on the proposed changes in the constitution will grant broad new powers under an executive presidential system to the Turkish president.

President Erdogan has worsened Turkey's row with Europe by urging expatriates across the continent to produce large families as a protection against alleged discrimination, while a migrant deal between Ankara and Brussels appears to be unravelling.

Adding to Ankara's anger, many Kurds attending the Frankfurt rally carried pictures of the imprisoned leaderof the PKK Abdullah Ocalan.

The group is listed as a terror organisation not just by Turkey but also the European Union and the United States.

In an interview published by German weekly Der Spiegel, Germany's foreign minister suggested that for now the most that Turkey can hope for is to one day achieve a "privileged partnership" with the 28-nation bloc.

She refrained from further comment, however, while a foreign ministry spokesman indicated that Berlin had no interest in entering a spiral of mutual provocations created to boost support for Erdogan among Turkish overseas voters.

Lashing out at Europe, Erdogan said "gas chambers and concentration camps" could once again be on the table, but that "they don't have the nerve for that".



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