Ankara to Netherlands: Tell Dutch ambassador not to return to Turkey for a while

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Dutch Ambassador Cornelis Van Rij (L) and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

After the Netherlands’s decision to cancel the flight clearance for Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu’s aircraft to land in Holland, Ankara asked that Dutch Ambassador Cornelis Van Rij not return to Turkey for a while, the state-run TRTHaber reported on Saturday.

Earlier on Saturday, the Netherlands’ chargé d’affaires in Ankara was summoned to the Foreign Ministry.

“[In response to the Netherlands’ decision to prevent Turkish ministers from entering the country] we have informed them that we do not want to see the Dutch ambassador, who is still on vacation abroad, return to his job in Turkey for a while,” said a Turkish Foreign Ministry statement released on Saturday.

The statement came minutes after reports that a car that was carrying Turkish Minister of Family and Social Policy Fatma Betül Sayan Kaya was stopped by Dutch police.

Minister Kaya decided to go to Rotterdam by car despite the fact that the Netherlands on Saturday canceled the flight clearance for Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu’s aircraft to land in Holland.

Earlier, Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu slammed Dutch authorities, saying tulips came to Holland from the Ottomans but failed to make them real men.

“The decision taken by the Netherlands is a scandal in all aspects and is not acceptable,” said Çavuşoğlu at İstanbul Atatürk Airport on Saturday.

“We will give them the response they deserve,” added Çavuşoğlu.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan threatened to refuse Dutch aircraft the right to land in Turkey.

“Don’t allow our foreign minister’s plane to go there as much as you want — let’s see how your planes will come to Turkey from now on. I am talking about diplomacy here, I am not talking about citizens’ travel. That is another issue, and we will assess that later on,” Erdoğan said during a speech in İstanbul’s Bağcılar district.

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