Two prime ministers with two different ways to handle the same problem

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Image: AP Presidential Press Service

Muslims around the world reacted fairly typically to the Christchurch massacre and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was in form by threatening that any anti-Muslim attendees from New Zealand or Australia to ANZAC commemorations would go home in a coffin. He also used video clips of the Christchurch killings to denounce Islamaphobia in his election rallies.

Scott Morrison came out swinging. Quote.

Mr Morrison summoned Turkish ambassador Korhan Karako? to Parliament House this morning, and left the meeting warning he would take further action.

“I do not accept the excuses that have been offered for those comments,” Mr Morrison told reporters after his meeting with the ambassador.

Mr Erdogan criticised the Anzacs for their role in the Gallipoli campaign and threatened to return anyone who came to his country with anti-Islam sentiment back in coffins.? End of quote.

ABC News

In contrast, Jacinda Ardern was restrained in speech, rejecting suggestions that the president’s comments would change the long-term relationship between New Zealand and Turkey, refusing to publicly criticise Erdogan and instead immediately despatching her deputy Winston Peters to Turkey. Quote.

“Our Deputy Prime Minister will be confronting those comments in Turkey,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told reporters today in Christchurch.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters is to attend a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation as an observer.

Erdogan used a political rally to play parts of video, live-streamed by the gunman who shot 50 people in two Christchurch mosques to Facebook, as a tool to stoke nationalist and religious sentiment before local elections on March 31.? End of quote.


With Anzac celebrations at Gallipoli next month people will be anxious about whether they should cancel travel arrangements. Quote.

When asked about Erdogan’s coffin comments and if it was safe for New Zealanders to travel to Turkey, she confirmed Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters was travelling to Turkey.
He is setting the record straight, face to face.” End of quote.


As is her custom, Ardern refused to either offer assurances or warn against travelling to Turkey, but Scott Morrison in contrast issued a strong warning, saying all options were on the table including expelling Turkey?s ambassador.  Quote.

Mr Morrison issued a warning to Australians travelling in Turkey to be cautious, and said Australia will review its travel advisory for Turkey. End of quote.

9 News

Two prime ministers with the same problem but completely different strategies – who will come out on top in this clash of the prime ministers?