Three children not enough, have five: Erdogan to Turks in EU

Infografik EU Support to Greece

Infografik EU Support to Greece

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday he expected parliament to approve the restoration of capital punishment after next month's referendum on controversial consitutional changes to expand his powers.

Turkish officials have been campaigning among emigre Turks in Germany and the Netherlands to promote the referendum. "I am of the mind that we do not need to respond to all provocation with a counter-provocation", he said.

Erdogan has repeatedly accused European Union states of behaving like Nazi Germany over what he sees as discrimination against Turks, in comments that have caused outrage across the continent.

Sigmar Gabriel said Mr Erdogan's comments were "ludicrous and absurd" but Europe should stop reacting, which only played into the Turkish leader's hands.

Europe has become increasingly Islamophobic and xenophobic, with racist sentiments and attacks against Muslims and non-white refugees, migrants and even naturalised citizens increasing at an alarming rate. You are Europe's future.

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Several days later, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte saw off a challenge from far-right politician Geert Wilders at the ballot box, to the relief of other European Union leaders.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, a hardliner who is close to Erdogan, threatened to "blow the mind" of Europe by sending over 15,000 refugees a month.

Tensions with Europe already are high as Turkey prepares for the April 16 referendum, which would broaden president Erdogan's powers.

Relations between Ankara and Berlin have been further upset following the arrest of a Turkish-German journalist in Ankara over his reports on Turkey's treatment of its Kurdish population.

"We have made it very clear from the very outset that we can and will take necessary measures should Turkey fail to comply with German legal system", the foreign minister said. But Cavusoglu's remarks on TV 24 channel came only three days before the one-year anniversary of a deal brokered between Brussels and Ankara that would allow for irregular migrants in Greece, the starting point of the trek to northern Europe, to be returned to Turkey in exchange for Syrian refugees hosted on Turkish soil.

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