Turkish Deputy PM says FETÖ involved in NATO drill controversy

Turkish Deputy PM says FETÖ involved in NATO drill controversy

ANKARA
Turkish Deputy PM says FETÖ involved in NATO drill controversy

The Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) was behind the controversy at a recent NATO drill that led Turkey to withdraw its troops, Deputy Prime Minister Hakan Çavuşoğlu claimed on Nov. 22.

Turkey withdrew 40 soldiers from last week’s computer-based exercise in Norway after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the founder of the Republic of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, were depicted at the facility as “enemies.”

Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Çavuşoğlu claimed that FETÖ - headed by U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, which is accused of having been behind last year’s failed coup attempt - played a role in the incident.

“We see these attitudes, these kinds of things mostly as tactics of members of FETO,” he said, referring to Turkish military officers with FETÖ ties who were previously posted to NATO.

FETÖ used certain countries as a “buttress” for their goals, Çavuşoğlu said, adding that there are “circles” that are “troubled” about Turkey’s current policies.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg immediately apologized to Turkey and Chief of Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar over the use of Erdoğan’s name and Atatürk’s picture on an “enemy chart” during the drills.

Ankara accuses FETÖ of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police and the judiciary.

Turkey, NATO, Norway