Although the Dutch have typically been open to immigration and different viewpoints, their recent barring of Turkish officials from entering the Netherlands has caused friction with Turkey. Citing the need to preserve public order and security, the Netherlands prevented the Turkish foreign minister from landing in the country and escorted the Turkish family minister out of the country. Dutch officials claim that the Turkish government called on Dutch citizens of Turkish descent to rally in large numbers in support of expanding the powers of the current president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In response, President Erdogan accused the Netherlands of fascism and openly criticized the Dutch administration’s removal of Turkish leaders as a sign of racism and Nazism. Many believe that Turkey has been sending ministers across Europe in a campaign to garner support among Turkish people for President Erdogan. Personally, I think President Erdogan is picking fights with countries across Europe as a way to win over Turkish nationalists who still haven’t decided if they’ll back the president’s expansion of powers. As the article states, the Turkish administration’s foreign policy right now is to increase support of its domestic policy. President Erdogan faces many critics and he needs all the support he can get to successfully increase his mandate. It will be interesting to see whether President Erdogan is able to fuel the fire of Turkish nationalism even with citizens of other countries, as he tried to do with the Netherlands.
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