Berlin – Chancellor Angela Merkel warned Monday that Germany could ban future campaign events by Turkish politicians on its soil unless Ankara stops “Nazi” jibes aimed at Berlin.

Turkey and the European Union — especially its top economy Germany, with its large Turkish diaspora — are locked in a bitter dispute as tensions rise ahead of a April 16 referendum on expanding President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s powers.

Erdogan at the weekend accused Merkel of using “Nazi measures” after local and state authorities in Germany had refused to allow several Turkish ministers to campaign for a ‘yes’ vote there.

Merkel stressed that such insults must stop — “no ifs, no buts” — and that Germany reserved the right to “take all necessary measures, including reviewing the permissions” for campaign events it had already granted.

A stern-faced Merkel said such comments were “breaking every taboo, without consideration for the suffering of those who were persecuted and murdered” by the Nazis.

© AFP YASIN AKGUL Turkish pro-government daily newspaper Gunes depicts German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a Nazi uniform on March 17, 2017

© AFP YASIN AKGUL – Turkish pro-government daily newspaper Gunes depicts German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a Nazi uniform on March 17, 2017