Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Saturday accused Paris of supporting terrorism, implying that France will face terrorist attacks, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.
“France aids, abets and supports terrorism, and they host terrorists at the Élysée Palace. You cannot explain it and you cannot get rid of terrorism. Did you see what the terrorists did [the Münster attack] in Germany? The same will also happen in France,” Erdoğan said at a ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) congress in the southwestern province of Denizli.
“As long as the West feeds these terrorists, it will sink,” he added.
In late March, President Emmanuel Macron met with a delegation from northern Syria that included the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia and reportedly offered to mediate between Turkey and the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), assuring the SDF of Paris’s support in stabilizing northern Syria.
Reacting to the meeting Erdoğan slammed Macron, saying he hoped Paris would not ask Ankara to help when terrorists fleeing Iraq and Syria arrive in France.
“With this attitude, France has no right to complain about any terrorist organization, any terrorist, any terrorist attack. Those who sleep with terrorists, welcome them in their palaces, will understand sooner or later the mistake that they made,” said Erdoğan.
Turkey sees the YPG as the Syrian extension of the terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has waged a decades-long battle against Turkish security forces in the country’s Southeast.
Turkish government on Saturday also criticised the United States over sending what it said were mixed messages on Syria, saying Washington was sowing confusion by equivocating about its future role in the country.
İbrahim Kalın, President Erdogan’s spokesman, told reporters that Turkey was talking to Russia about the Syrian town of Tel Rifaat and would not need to intervene in the area given Moscow’s assurances that the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia was not present there. “The President of the United States says ‘We’re going to get out of Syria very soon’ and then others say, ‘No, we are staying’,” Kalın said, referring to recent comments from US President Donald Trump and other officials.
“Obviously it does create a lot of confusion on the ground, as well as for us. We would like to see some clarity, for them to decide what is the next step, what is the ultimate goal there, said Kalın.
Trump agreed in a National Security Council meeting this week to keep US troops in Syria a little longer to defeat ISIL, but he wants them out relatively soon, a senior administration official said on Wednesday. (SCF with turkishminute.com)