Albanian MP blasts Erdoğan’s call for struggle against Gülenists
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) and Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama (R). AFP PhotoBen Blushi, an Albanian lawmaker of the ruling Socialist Party (PS), has slammed Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s call for the country to target followers of Fethullah Gülen, which the Turkish president made during his recent visit to the Balkan country.
“No country’s president can ask for such a thing while on his visit to another country,” Blushi was quoted as saying by Today’s Zaman, the English-language newspaper linked to the Gülen movement, on May 16.
Erdoğan reportedly requested the closure of schools linked to the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Gülen on his visit, during which he attended the opening of the “Balkans’ largest mosque” in the Albanian capital Tirana on May 13.
The 10,000-square meter mosque near the Albanian parliament will be able to hold 4,500 worshippers.
Blushi said the mosque should not seen as a “gift” to be given in return for the closure of Gülen-affiliated schools.
“Those schools that Erdoğan seeks to close down have contributed to education at thousands of schools in Albania,” he was quoted as saying.
Erdoğan and Gülen have been at odds since the end of 2013, with the president accusing the latter’s followers of attempting a coup against the government and organizing a “parallel state” within the state.