Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Recep Akdag slams US for trying to harm Turkey through case against businessman Riza Sarraf.
Turkey’s deputy prime minister said Tuesday a plot against Turkey is being conducted in the U.S. through a case against a Turkish businessman in New York.
Speaking to lawmakers during a debate on the 2018 budget, Recep Akdag slammed the U.S. for trying to damage Turkey with the case against Riza Sarraf.
"A plot against Turkey is being conducted in the U.S. Nobody should be deceived by this plot," said Akdag, referring to the case.
Akdag called on Turkish public opinion not to be manipulated by the case, as it will only harm Turkey.
Sarraf last month accepted all charges against him and agreed to cooperate as a witness against Mehmet Hakan Atilla, the former deputy CEO of Turkey’s Halkbank.
Sarraf was detained last year on charges of violating sanctions against Iran, while Atilla was arrested in the U.S. earlier this year on similar charges.
Turkey recently launched a probe against the U.S. prosecutors connected to the case.
Istanbul prosecutors accused former U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York, Preet Bharara, and his replacement Joon H. Kim of using information and documents from an old Turkish investigation in their case.
Bharara, who launched the probe into Sarraf, was fired on March 11 as part of a mass Trump administration housecleaning of U.S. attorneys who served under President Barack Obama.
Turkish authorities have called on the U.S. administration to drop the case involving Sarraf, saying it "lacks legal grounds".