Erdoğan says no democracy or freedoms in Germany, Switzerland and Belgium

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan greets the crowd during a mass opening ceremony in Denizli, Turkey on March 24, 2017.

As tension between European countries and Turkey over a ban on referendum campaign rallies conducted by Turkish ministers persists, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Friday that Germany, Switzerland and Belgium lack democracy and freedoms, the Diken news site reported on Friday.

“Is there democracy in Germany, Switzerland and Belgium? They do not have anything in the name of freedom or freedom of belief,” said Erdoğan during a public meeting in Denizli.

Strongly criticizing the European Parliament for banning the free distribution of the staunchly pro-Erdoğan Daily Sabah newspaper on its premises, Erdoğan said: “Where is the press freedom that you [Europe] used to talk about? Why did you ban it? You will pay for banning Daily Sabah in the European Parliament. You will not be able to rest at ease.”

You call me a dictator, I will call you a Nazi

“As long as you call Tayyip Erdoğan a ‘dictator,’ Tayyip Erdoğan will call you a ‘fascist’, a ‘Nazi’,” said Erdoğan in response to European remarks calling him a dictator.

“You know why? Let me tell you. They paint swastikas on our houses of worship in Europe. O state, where are you? Why do you allow them [to do this]? Why you do not pursue them? Many of our citizens were killed in Europe, but those cases have not yet been resolved.”

Erdoğan also said they have no intention of engaging in a fight with anybody but just want to protect the rights of Turkish citizens living in Europe.

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