Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addressed his party supporters in the Anatolian province of Kayseri. AA photo
The Wall Street Journal is engaged in biased journalism and is taking sides ahead of the coming U.S. elections, the Turkish prime minister has said after the daily contradicted Ankara’s version of the events surrounding the June 22 downing of Turkish jet by Syria.
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan rejected WSJ's recent claims which said the plane was shot in Syrian airspace, citing senior U.S. defense officials as a source.
"Who are these sources?" Erdoğan asked during an event in the Central Anatolia province of Kayseri, calling on the WSJ to reveal its sources and accusing the paper of "cowardice” by concealing the origin of their stories. "They have published lies earlier as well.”
Erdoğan also criticized the local media for accepting the WSJ story as truth and rejecting the reports from Turkish authorities, such as the military and the Foreign Ministry. Erdoğan connected the WSJ's reports to the coming elections in the United States, saying the stories stemmed from the anti-Barack Obama attitude in the country.
An unarmed Turkish military jet was shot down June 22 by Syria. Turkey claims the plane was shot in international airspace with a heat- or laser-guided missile, but Syria rejects the claims, saying the Turkish jet was shot by anti-aircraft gunners as it flew at an altitude of 100 meters within Syrian airspace.