Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan ramped up his feud with German Chancellor Angela Merkel Sunday by accusing her government of behaving like in Nazi times in cancelling two political meetings of Turkish residents in German cities that were due to be addressed by Turkish officials. This followed public outrage over Ankara's arrest of a Turkish-German journalist.
The planned rallies were called to promote support among Germany’s 1.5 million-strong Turkish community for Turkey’s April referendum on Erdogan’s sweeping new presidential powers. The German authorities cited security concerns. Erdogan has also accused Germany of harboring his enemies, from Kurdish militants to coup organizers. Under heavy fire himself for his authoritarian measures, Erdogan declared at a rally in Istanbul: "Germany, you have no relation whatsoever to democracy and you should know that your current actions are no different to those of the Nazi period,” and, "We will talk about Germany's actions in the international arena and we will put them to shame in the eyes of the world.”