He’ll cooperate with Turkish authorities to “make sure” those involved are “brought to justice”
In July, the Turkish military attempted a coup to take out President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s regime. They failed, which led to a crackdown by the government and a purge of anyone the government felt had ties to scholar Fetullah Gulen, who they feel devised the coup. Erodgan has railed against the West for not standing with its NATO ally, but that all changed this weekend.
President Barack Obama met with Erdogan and promised the U.S. will help bring the coup plotters to justice.
Fox News reported:
Obama, speaking at the G20 summit in China, praised the Turkish people who resisted the coup attempt, saying they “affirmed their commitment to democracy” and that they are “the strength and brilliance of democratic institutions.”
Obama also said he was glad that Erdogan was safe and able to participate in the economic summit, in what appeared to be a better exchange than the one Erdogan had recently had with Vice President Biden regarding the extradition of controversial cleric Fethullah Gulen, who lives in Pennsylvania.
In a vague reference to Gulen, Obama said the Justice Department and U.S. national security teams “will cooperate with Turkish authorities to determine how we can make sure that those who carried out these activities are brought to justice.”
The Turkish government has told the U.S. government in the past that keeping Gulen from Turkey is a “hostile act.” Gulen lives in Pennsylvania after he imposed a self-exile in 1999 to escape the regime before Erdogan came to power. But the U.S. said it would only extradite Gulen once the Turkish authorities provide proof that he had direct involvement with the coup.
Erdogan said the government is currently gathering all the evidence “indicating Gulen orchestrated the plot from afar.”
The Turkish authorities have purged hundreds of thousands of people from their jobs, including shutting down 131 media outlets that didn’t toe Erdogan’s line.
“It looks at least as if something has been prepared. The lists are available, which indicates it was prepared and to be used at a certain stage,” Hahn said.
“I’m very concerned. It is exactly what we feared.”
In August, a Turkish court officially issued an arrest warrant for Gulen. But, again, until the government provides the U.S. with the proper evidence, the authorities will not hand over Gulen.
Gulen remained an ally of Erdoğan until 2013 when the courts launched a corruption investigation against the then-prime minister. Erdoğan quickly squashed the investigation, but blamed his old ally “for orchestrating the scandal.”DONATE
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