Forget about the gentleman living in Pennsylvania, US tells Ankara
US State Department Spokeswoman Marie Harf makes a press briefing in Washington. AA PhotoTurkey should stop discussing “the gentlemen in Pennsylvania” and instead focus on other important issues as a NATO ally, the U.S. State Department said, regarding U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen.
Asked if the United States was more in line with Gülen’s position on Turkey than Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan over the issues of the Twitter ban and corruption allegations, spokeswoman Marie Harf said: “Well, that’s ridiculous. Regardless of whether this gentleman was living in Pennsylvania or not, it would still not be okay for the government of Turkey to ban Twitter. It would still not be okay for the government of Turkey to crack down like they have on dissent. Those things have nothing to do with the fact that one of their citizens is living in the Pennsylvania countryside.”
Harf said Turkey was a close NATO ally of the U.S. “We don’t always agree on everything, but we don’t agree on everything with anyone. So forget about the gentleman living in Pennsylvania. We have a bilateral alliance with the government of Turkey. We will speak out when we disagree. We will speak out when we agree. And it’s really up to the people of Turkey to make decisions about their government. It’s not up to us, and any reports that we have any impact on that are just crazy.”