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Nihat Zeybekci

Austria refused to allow entry to Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci, who was going to participate in an event recalling last year’s failed coup attempt, Reuters reported Monday, quoting a spokesman for Austria’s Foreign Ministry.

“I can confirm that Foreign Minister [Sebastian] Kurz has in fact forbidden the Turkish economy minister from entering the country,” the spokesman said, explaining that his government was concerned that the event would be “very big” and constituted “danger for public order and security in Austria”, the spokesman explained. Turkey is yet to react, but, based on past experience, react it will.

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The Netherlands on Friday blocked the planned entry of Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Tugrul Turkes, also to participate in a ceremony of Turkish migrants commemorating the failed coup.

Last week, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan was not permitted to speak to Turkish ex-patriots in Germany while participating in the G20 leaders’ summit. An unamused Erdogan announced that that Germany was “committing suicide.”

Austria is one of the major foes of Turkey’s attempts to become a member of the EU, and has been advocating the termination of negotiations with the Turks.

On Sunday, hundreds of thousands of Turkish citizens arrived in Istanbul on Sunday, after a 250 miles, 25-day protest march, demanding government stop choking Turkey’s democracy. The march and the rally in Istanbul were led by Erdogan’s only remaining serious opponent, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the head of Republican People’s Party (CHP).

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