'The gates to Europe will open when the time comes': Erdogan sends chilling warning that he is willing to let millions of Syrian refugees head to the West - as he says he will 'crush' Kurds if they do not withdraw
'Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan today warned the West that the 'gates to Europe' will be opened to Syrian refugees 'when the time comes'.
In a provocative speech, Erdogan savaged Western powers for refusing to take in millions of refugees and threatened to send to Europe to 'see how they deal with it'.
Erdogan hopes to resettle some of Turkey's four million refugees in the 'safe zone' he has carved out in northern Syria, but is facing anger from NATO over his attack on Kurdish fighters there.
The Turkish leader warned the Kurds would be 'crushed' if they did not withdraw from the border zone which is now being patrolled by Russian troops.
The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) claimed today that Turkey had resumed its military onslaught with a ground offensive against three villages near the border.
NATO defence ministers are meeting in Brussels today amid fresh criticism from Washington and calls for sanctions on Turkish officials.
But in his speech in Ankara today, Erdogan warned of a possible influx of refugees if European powers anger him.
'When we say we will open the gates, they are up in arms. Don't be up in arms, the gates will be opened when the time comes,' he said.
'You have money, you are strong but when 100, 200 people go to Greece by sea, you rush to the phone,' Erdogan complained.
'Look here, there are four million people. You do not say anything about this.''
Read more: 'The gates to Europe will open when the time comes': Erdogan sends chilling warning that he is willing to let millions of Syrian refugees head to the West - as he says he will 'crush' Kurds if they do not withdraw
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