CHP slams Erdoğan over ‘shift’ in migrant policy

CHP slams Erdoğan over ‘shift’ in migrant policy

CHP slams Erdoğan over ‘shift’ in migrant policy

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Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has criticized Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan over what he suggested was a U-turn in remarks uttered by the latter on the country’s policy toward Syrian migrants in Turkey.

“How come one make a U-turn in a short while,” he said, slamming a remark by Erdoğan that suggested bussing Syrians in Turkey to Syria.

“They have accused us, saying ‘the CHP does not want Syrians and it will send them all to Syria.’ Yes, we said it, but what we said is nothing but ‘We will secure peace and tranquility in Syria and send Syrians to their homeland.’ What they say at the moment is ‘We will bus them [to Syria].’ How can one make such a 180-degree turn in this short time?” Kılıçdaroğlu told reporters following a visit to a 7-year-old lymphoma patient at the Ankara University Medical School Hospital on Feb. 11.

Turkey is already hosting more than 2.2 million Syrian refugees who have been living across the country since the start of the civil war in Syria in 2011.

Turkey is facing the prospects of a new, massive influx of Syrians, with tens of thousands of Syrians amassed at its border after thousands fled escalating violence in Aleppo that has been caused by Russian airstrikes and a government offensive.

Western countries as well as the United Nations have called on Turkey to open its borders to the thousands stuck on the Turkish border, but the Turkish administration has dismissed the calls, saying the country was already providing humanitarian help and mulling an option to open the border.

“I see calls by several parties including the United Nations Security Council that do not move a finger to solve the crisis in Syria and that are not able to say ‘stop, that’s enough’ to Russian bombardments as two-faced,” Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said during a joint press conference with his Dutch counterpart in The Hague on Feb. 10.