Turkey slams US statement on Hamas officials' visit
Turkey on Aug. 25 said Hamas is a democratically elected actor in Gaza representing a significant reality in the region, rebuffing U.S. objections to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s meeting this week with Hamas members in Turkey.
Turkey fully rejects the U.S. statement, which crossed the line, said a Foreign Ministry statement, adding that designating Hamas representatives as terrorists would not contribute to regional peace or stability.
Accusing the U.S. administration of openly supporting the terrorist YPG/PKK and hosting the ringleader of FETÖ, the terror group behind the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey, the ministry said the U.S. has no right to comment on third countries’ politics.
The statement added that after the U.S. administration designated Hamas a terrorist group, it closed the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) mission in Washington, meaning American officials cut their ties with the Palestinian Authority, isolating itself from regional realities.
It called on the U.S. to use its regional influence and power to serve not the interests of Israel but to follow more balanced policies in a bid to bring a righteous and fair solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
Ismail Haniyeh, the political head of Hamas, and a delegation paid a visit to Turkey over the weekend and met Erdoğan in Istanbul on Aug. 22.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and EU – has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.
The U.S. has allied itself with the YPG, the PKK’s Syrian branch, as a supposed ally against ISIL
FETÖ and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gülen orchestrated the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people killed and nearly 2,200 injured.
Despite years of requests from Turkey, the U.S. has failed to extradite terror group FETÖ’s leader, Fetullah Gulen.