Turkey’s autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Monday had a closed-door meeting with representatives of US Jewish organizations in New York, the Cumhuriyet daily reported on Tuesday.
Erdoğan met with US Jewish representatives at his hotel during his visit to the US to participate in the 72nd United Nations General Assembly.
Erdoğan also had meetings with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Somali-American İlhan Omar, the assistant minority leader of the Minnesota House of Representatives. Erdoğan was accompanied in his meetings by Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak and his spokesman İbrahim Kalın.
Meanwhile, Erdoğan has also criticized a US decision to cancel a $1.2 million deal for the purchase of firearms for Erdoğan’s security detail and said the US is not allowing Turkey to buy guns while it sends them to terrorist organizations for free.
Erdoğan’s remarks came during an interview with PBS on Monday during his visit to the US to attend the 72nd United Nations General Assembly.
Referring to US arms support for the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in northern Syria, which Turkey claims is affiliated with the terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Erdoğan protested the refusal of the US to sell Turkey weapons and accused it of supporting terrorists.
“And when we are not able to acquire those weapons from the United States, why are you giving them to terrorists? It’s a question that we ask our friends in the United States. And when these questions are not answered, we feel sad, as a strategic partner of the US,” said Erdoğan.
Following violence perpetrated by Erdoğan’s bodyguards on protesters during the president’s visit to Washington this spring, US lawmakers expressed strong opposition to the sale of weapons to Erdoğan’s security detail. A total of 19 including 15 Turkish security officials have been indicted by a grand jury for attacking the protesters. (SCF with turkishminute.com)