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POLITICS > Erdoğan calls Russia's Patriot reaction 'very wrong'

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Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has described Russia's harsh reaction to NATO’s deployment of Patriot missiles near Turkey's border with Syria as “very wrong,” and said such a reaction almost amounted to intervening in Turkey's domestic affairs.

Erdoğan's remarks came late Thursday while speaking to journalists on board a plane en route from Pakistan to Turkey.

“I find Russia's statements very wrong. Its approach of trying to show Turkey's internal affairs - which it is not involved with - as a matter of its own [interest] is wrong. The issue is the placement of missiles for defense purpose,” Erdoğan was quoted as saying in remarks published Friday by daily Milliyet.

While speaking in Pakistan earlier on Thursday, Erdoğan underlined that the deployment was for defensive purposes only.

“This is a measure being taken against certain possible attacks from [the Syrian] side,” Erdoğan said.

Yet in Moscow, Russia's Foreign Ministry warned Turkey against using the Patriots for “muscle flexing.”

“The militarization of the Syrian-Turkish border is an alarming signal,” spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said. “We have different advice for our Turkish colleagues -- use their influence with the Syrian opposition to accelerate the start of a political dialogue.”

A sudden Gaza visit

Erdoğan argued that the most active policy for providing a truce between Israel and Hamas was conducted by Turkey, Egypt and Qatar.

“Dates are not announced,” Erdoğan responded when asked when he would visit Gaza. Upon insistent questions on the same issue, Erdoğan said: “I may suddenly go to Gaza.”

November/23/2012

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READER COMMENTS

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Truth Teller

11/25/2012 7:16:21 AM

Dear Murat . I assume that you are under 45 yaer old otherwise you should know that Israel occupied WB in 1967 only after tha late king Husein from Jordan declarewar on Israel, he even shelled Tel Aviv.

Murat

11/23/2012 9:35:18 PM

More confusion of basic concepts. No one, including Erdogan has anything to say about Israel's right to self defense. How is occupation of WB is self defense? How is murdering Gaza farmers and fishermen and preventing paprika and diapers reaching there self defense? Executing unarmed civilians on Mavi Marmara withs shots to head and back is self defense? Just today IDF shot and killed an unarmed Palestinian behind a fence, of course in self defense.

delmore fitzpatrick

11/23/2012 5:39:50 PM

fine. erdogan's entitled to say what he likes but when it comes to him making similar - nay, far more extreme - statements re: israel and her right to self defense as a sovereign state, we hear a very different tune. this big mouth has sidelined turkey's effectiveness in the middle east as a diplomatic player. his emotional, short-sighted conduct of foreign policy & his increasingly dictatorial turn at home speak for themselves.

Chris Tahos

11/23/2012 4:27:33 PM

@Nadiri Basaran.Only the ones who completely understand the meaning of M.A.D. (Mutually Assured Destruction).

Murat

11/23/2012 4:15:59 PM

Predictable reaction from the peanut gallery. What else is he supposed to say? It is none of Russia's business, there is still a NATO, paper tiger and all. Outrageous that a defense system gets a reaction. Their missiles have circled Turkey meanwhile. Unfortunately Erdogan is not good at this high stakes chess.

Nadiri Başaran

11/23/2012 3:39:14 PM

I don't know why he bothers to respond, does anyone take any notice of what Russia thinks anymore?

mara mcglothin

11/23/2012 3:37:42 PM

Like a child caught "having his cake and eating it too!" You can't please all the people all of the time. This is a hard lesson for the esteemed PM to learn. When you try to act like a World power, there will always be someone there to criticize your every move. And we all know how much the PM enjoys criticism. It is what it is.

Ashley Meyer

11/23/2012 2:41:39 PM

Now Mr Erdogan, just replace the details of your story with Israel and it's Hamas blockade and you will clearly understand why you are the laughing stock of the world. Focus on your own business!

american american

11/23/2012 2:22:12 PM

kind of like turkey not being involved in norway's internal affairs?

Ryan James

11/23/2012 2:10:08 PM

stay in Pakistan, PLEASE!
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