In an unprecedented abandonment of diplomatic language, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu branded a German reporter's claims about Ankara allegedly detaining tourists coming to Turkey as "bullshit" at a tourism fair yesterday in Berlin.
During a press conference at the International Berlin Tourism Fair, one of the reporters asked Cavusoglu about claims that tourists visiting Turkey are being detained.
Seemingly simultaneously annoyed and amused by the question, the top diplomat said "Come on, you must be joking. This is just black propaganda by the media, including you."
The Turkish Daily Sabah reported that Cavusoglu continued to praised his country's tourism record, saying: "We welcome around 40 million tourists per year and as long as they don't break any law, they are not being imprisoned."
Leaving the diplomatic language that he is ordinarily known for aside, Cavusoglu then opened fire at the journalist:
I can say [the reporter's claim] is bullshit. Everyone is enjoying their holidays in Turkey, don't make black propaganda my friend.
Relations between Germany and Turkey have recently been strained and sunk to new lows after local German authorities cancelled several rallies that aimed to bring Turkish government officials together with the large Turkish diaspora living in Germany.
The rallies were intended to be a part of the campaign for the upcoming 16 April constitutional referendum in Turkey and were scheduled months in advance in various parts of Germany. However, and days before the rallies were due to be held, local authorities cancelled them citing inadequate parking facilities amongst other excuses.
As a result, Turkish officials, including President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, have slammed Germany's perceived hostile stance, saying that they were reminiscent of the fascistic practices of the 1930s, with Erdogan making direct comparisons between the present German government and the Nazi regime who led Germany into the devastation of World War II.