Turkey expects new US stance on Gulen

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Turkey’s deputy prime minister said Monday that two main issues -- the extradition of the leader of the Fetullah Terror Organization (FETO) and the end of support to the PYD -- were essential in strengthening Turkish-U.S. relations.

Speaking to reporters after a cabinet meeting in the Turkish capital Ankara on Monday, Numan Kurtulmus said Turkey was expecting that the Trump administration review these two issues.

“One of these is the extradition of [Fetullah] Gulen who is the leader of a bandit gang that commited a crime against the entire [Turkish] population during the July 15 coup [attempt],” Kurtulmus said.

“The second fundamental issue,” Kurtulmus said, “is the end of the support to the PYD.”

FETO, led by U.S.-based Fetullah Gulen, has been accused of orchestrating the failed coup attempt of July 2016, which left 248 people martyred, and around 2,200 others wounded.

Turkey's government accuses the FETO terror network of staging the coup attempt and of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

Since the failed coup, operations have been ongoing in the military, police, and judiciary, as well as in state institutions across the country, to arrest suspects with alleged links to FETO.

Regarding the PYD, Turkey considers the group as the PKK’s Syrian affiliate. The PKK, which resumed its decades-old armed campaign in July 2015, is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the EU.

Turkey considers the PYD a terrorist organization whereas the U.S. deems it a "reliable partner" and an "effective fighting force" against Daesh.

“We are convinced and hopeful that, especially regarding Turkey and the U.S. relations, the old administration’s mistakes will not be repeated,” he said.

2017.01.23 / 17:48
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