Turkish, Australian ministers speak amid Gallipoli spat

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish officials say Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has held a telephone conversation with his Australian counterpart, Marise Payne.

Foreign Ministry officials did not provide further details about the telephone call on Wednesday, which came after recent comments by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about the World War I Gallipoli campaign drew ire from Australia.

On his election campaign trail, Erdogan has suggested that opposition to Islam motivated Australia and New Zealand to send troops to fight against Turkey during WWI. He also said anyone coming to Turkey with anti-Muslim sentiments would be sent back in coffins.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called in Turkey’s ambassador and demanded that Erdogan’s comments be withdrawn. His government issued a travel advisory warning people visiting Turkey for the Gallipoli remembrance ceremonies to exercise caution.

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