Turkey, Netherlands appoint ambassadors with normalization message

Turkey, Netherlands appoint ambassadors with normalization message

Turkey, Netherlands appoint ambassadors with normalization message

The Netherlands and Turkey have appointed ambassadors in a bid to “normalize bilateral relations,” as the two countries’ ambassador seats have been vacant after almost a year of tension and relations have been conducted via charges d’affaires. 

Former Justice and Development Party (AKP) lawmaker and former deputy leader Şaban Dişli was appointed on Sept. 7 as Turkey’s The Hague Ambassador while the Dutch government appointed its former NATO representative Marjanne de Kwaasteniet as the Ankara Ambassador.

“The Netherlands Foreign Minister’s scheduled official visit to our country in October will be the consecutive step over the normalization of relations. We wish these pleasing developments to be reflected in our rooted relations with the Netherlands for over 400 years and our negotiation process with the European Union,” the statement from the Turkish Presidency read on Sept. 7.

The two countries had vowed to normalize ties after a year of tension, as Turkey’s Foreign Ministry on July 20 announced that a mutual decision was reached after a conversation with Turkey’s Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok.

Relations went sour after Dutch authorities canceled the flight permit of a plane carrying Çavuşoğlu in the 2017 referendum campaign. Former Family and Social Affairs Minister Fatma Betül Sayan Kaya was also previously expelled from Rotterdam.

Following the tension, Turkey had conveyed its wish for the Dutch ambassador to Ankara “not to return to his post for a while,” and in February, the Dutch Ministry stated it had formally withdrawn its ambassador to Turkey, who has been physically barred from the country for almost a year.

After the first round of talks for normalization failed in early 2018, diplomatic relations had been conducted via the charges d’affaires since then.

On Aug. 31, the two countries decided to reinstate ambassadors after Çavuşoğlu had a meeting with his Dutch counterpart Blok on the sidelines of the Gymnich meeting between the ministers of EU member and candidate states.