Presidential spokesman accuses European press of being biased over judicial proceeding on defeated coup attempt
Turkey's presidential spokesman on Wednesday accused European organizations and press members of being biased regarding the judicial proceeding on July 15 defeated coup in Turkey.
"Those who say that there are problems with the rule of law in Turkey should come and observe the court proceedings regarding cases of July 15 defeated coup," Ibrahim Kalin said in an interview with Best FM radio station.
"We also recommend them to come and sit with the relatives of martyrs and listen to them," Kalin said.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
About the rising U.S.-North Korea tensions, Kalin said that the whole world must be denuclearized. "All countries should take a global stance against nuclear weapons."
He said that it was "unfair" for the countries which own nuclear weapons to say "We have [nuclear weapons], we will not give them up but from now on, we don’t want anybody else to have it”.
When asked about the sincerity of the five countries, which are the world's biggest arms producers, in calling for "disarmament", Kalin said one needs to look into "who benefits whenever there is a possibility of war in any part of the world, and how they would benefit from it".
"Unfortunately, it is the weapon companies who end up benefiting from it," he added.
He pointed out that such weapons lobbies were always fueling tensions to run their businesses.
Regarding a planned referendum on the secession of northern Iraq’s Kurdish region on Sept. 25., Kalin said Turkey's objection in this matter was mainly to "protect Iraq's territorial integrity and political sovereignty".
"It is out of question that we adopt a negative attitude towards Kurdish people either in Syria, Iraq or any other region," he said, adding a secession would not benefit Iraq’s integrity or Iraqi Kurds.
Kalin also objected to the inclusion of Kirkuk in the referendum saying "Erbil administration has no right to [include] it".
"Kirkuk has a very special place in our history. It is a Turkmen city. Arabs and Kurds live there, too. And it is pretty clear what would happen in such a referendum. The Turkmen who live there would not attend it," he said.
The September referendum, which will be considered non-binding, will see the region’s residents vote on whether or not to declare independence from Iraq’s central government in Baghdad.
Baghdad, for its part, rejects the planned poll, saying it could adversely affect the region’s ongoing fight against the Daesh terrorist group.
The Iraqi government also claims that the poll would violate Iraq’s 2005 constitution and would be “of no benefit -- politically or economically -- to the region’s Kurds”.
Turkey, too, rejects the planned referendum, insisting that the region’s stability is inextricably linked to the maintenance of Iraq’s territorial integrity.
The U.S., meanwhile, has likewise expressed concern that the referendum could serve as a “distraction” from other pressing regional issues -- especially the fight against terrorism and the political stabilization of war-weary Iraq.