After the people's will, Egypt's rulers have started massacring their own people: Turkish PM
ISTANBUL – Anadolu Agency
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan speaks during a fast-breaking dinner organized by the All Industrialist and Businessmen Association (TÜMSİAD) in Istanbul on July 27. AA photoTurkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has slammed the Egyptian security forces' crackdown against supporters of the ousted President Mohamed Morsi in the early hours of July 27 that killed dozens of people and injured over 1,000.
Quoting the Anadolu Agency report that put the death toll at well over 200, Erdoğan described as a “massacre” the killings of protesters who have refused to leave Rabaa al-Adawiya Square since the military takeover on July 3.
“We see that hearts are not softening in the Muslim world despite Ramadan. While Muslims were preparing for their Sahur meal, a massacre took place in Egypt. Two-hundred people were martyred. After the people's will, those who overthrew the government are now massacring the people,” Erdoğan said during a fast-breaking dinner organized by the All Industrialist and Businessmen Association (TÜMSİAD) in Istanbul on July 27.
Creating parallels with the nationwide protests in Turkey that were sparked after an attempt to cut down trees in Istanbul’s Gezi Park, Erdoğan argued that Morsi supporters did not participate in violent acts, unlike the Turkish demonstrators.
“The Egyptian people have been showing dignity against the military coup for weeks. They didn’t have Molotov cocktails or weapons in their hands, they had patience. They didn't allow vandalism. Nothing that happened in our country has been happening in Cairo or in Alexandria,” Erdoğan said.
“People were calling on their rulers to desist from the coup and give them back their president. But instead of listening to their people, the coup-stagers in Egypt have responded by sending their gangs with guns and bullets,” he added.
The prime minister also criticized the thousands of Egyptians who filled Tahrir Square following a call from the army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to demonstrate in support of the interim government.
“You know what saddens me? While more than 200 of my brothers were being killed and 5,000 injured, there were people having fun with fireworks in Tahrir Square. Who were these people? We should be vigilant against these sort of plots,” he said.
‘Where are you Europe, US, UN, BBC, CNN and Muslim World?’
Erdoğan also harshly condemned nearly every international actor for not voicing indignation for the deadly crackdown in Egypt.
“Where is Europe, where are the United States? Where are the European values? Those who are giving lessons of democracy, where is democracy? Where is the United Nations?” Erdoğan asked, reiterating his unease against those actors who had criticized the police crackdown in Turkey against Gezi protesters.
He once again lashed out at the international media outlets and the signatories of an open letter recently published in the British daily The Times criticizing the Turkish police's response to the Gezi protesters. “Where are those who made a fuss when Turkish police used water and tear gas in a very righteous and legitimate manner, against the massacre and coup in Egypt? Those who gave an advertisement to newspapers, hundreds of people have been massacred in one night in Egypt, why don’t you see this? The BBC and CNN, who covered the violent demonstrations in Istanbul for hours, why aren’t you covering this?” he said.
Erdoğan also did not spare the Muslim countries, using strident language to argue that he considered those who kept silent on the latest killings as "accomplices." “Well, Muslim world! Your brothers are being massacred. You did not discern the oppression in Syria, when are you going to see this?” he said.
Erdoğan called once again for the restoration of the elected government. “We know very well those who are behind this coup. We want them to pull themselves together. We are sending our greetings to our brothers who resist against the coup from Istanbul. May God be with the Egyptian people,” he said.
The latest wave of killings came as both countries had started to make steps in order to mend the relations that have been strained since the takeover. Erdoğan had adopted the harshest stance by a foreign leader on the military coup, repeatedly calling for Morsi's release. Morsi has been held incommunicado in an unknown location since he was toppled.