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Six held in pro-Turkey demo in Amsterdam

dpa logodpa 12/03/2017

Turkey's Foreign Ministry has summoned the Netherlands' top diplomat to formally protest its treatment of a Turkish minister.

Six people have been detained at a pro-Turkey protest in Amsterdam that turned violent amid a growing row over the Turkish government's attempts to hold rallies in European countries.

Protesters were angry at Dutch authorities for barring the Turkish foreign minister from flying into the city of Rotterdam on Saturday to address a rally at the Turkish consulate.

A second Turkish minister who travelled to Rotterdam by car from Germany was later blocked from entering the consulate and escorted back to the German border.

The demonstration Sunday in Amsterdam by a few hundred Turkish-born Dutch residents turned violent in the evening, when protesters began rampaging through the streets and hurling stones at police.

Police responded by using water cannon and batons on the protesters.

It was the second night of unrest after several people were detained at a protest in Rotterdam on Saturday night.

The Dutch Foreign Ministry warned on Monday that given the heightened state of tension, Dutch citizens in Turkey should be vigilant and avoid large crowds. However, travel to Turkey was not discouraged.

A spiralling feud between Turkey and Europe over the political rallies, which are aimed at boosting support among Turks living abroad for a constitutional referendum next next, escalated into a diplomatic crisis over the weekend.

Turkey's Foreign Ministry summoned the Dutch charge d'affaires in Ankara for a third time in as many days, and is demanding a formal written apology from the Dutch authorities over the treatment of its two ministers.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has ruled out any apology.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the Dutch government "fascists" and "Nazi remnants" for blocking the rallies.

He has accused the German government of acting like Nazis for similar decisions to ban the campaign rallies on security grounds.

German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere criticised the Turkish rallies, saying on Sunday that "there is no reason for an election campaign (in Germany)," according to remarks made to public television channel ARD.

"We don't want the situation to escalate," Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble told public television ZDF. "Everyone in the federal government agrees with that. We just want Turkey to return to reason."

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