Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan thanks God for journalist's arrest

The Turkish president then turned his sights on the German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Tensions with Berlin could ratcheted up further with an Erdogan spokesman saying Turkey is considering sending another minister to Germany to speak at a rally ahead of the April referendum.

Some local German authorities have chose to block appearances by Turkish ministers, but Merkel's federal government so far has made no such decisions. "When we call them Nazis, they [European leaders] get uncomfortable", he said.

Sunday's accusation was the latest in a string of Turkish comments drawing Nazi parallels with present-day Germany and the Netherlands in a dispute over restrictions on Turkish officials campaigning there in a referendum campaign.

Erdogan said the crisis in relations with Europe over the last days "showed that a new page had been opened in the ongoing fight against our country". They rally together in solidarity.

Turkish authorities detained more than 2,000 people over the last week for suspected links to militant groups or last year's failed coup attempt, the interior ministry said on Monday.

The Turkish foreign ministry accused the German authorities "of the worst example of double standards" for allowing the protest while preventing Turkish ministers from campaigning there for a "yes" vote.

"Yesterday (Saturday), Germany put its name under another scandal", presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin told CNN-Turk.

"Turkish intelligence and other institutions can provide Germany with extensive proof if Germans are willing to talk to them", Iyimaya said.

Many protesters carried symbols of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), listed as a terror organisation not just by Turkey but also the European Union and the United States. After attaining the presidency, Erdogan sought and won parliamentary support for making a number of constitutional changes.

"On Saturday the German ambassador was invited - was summoned - to the foreign ministry and this was condemned in the strongest way".

In early March, Turkey's Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag pulled out of a scheduled visit to Germany, after a small town in German south-western region of Baden-Wurttemberg denied him the chance to address his countrymen.

But Turkish ministers and Erdogan have said they need to respond to popular demand for the restoration of capital punishment to deal with the ringleaders of the July 15 coup bid.

  • Leroy Wright