Turkish, US presidents discuss bilateral relations

Turkish, US presidents discuss bilateral relations

NEW YORK- Anadolu Agency
Turkish, US presidents discuss bilateral relations

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sept. 22 discussed bilateral relations and regional issues with his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump.     

Erdoğan and Trump spoke over the phone, according to a statement by the Republic of Turkey Directorate of Communications.

Earlier on Sunday, Erdogan also hosted South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham at Peninsula Hotel.

President Erdoğan on Sept. 21 arrived in New York to attend the 74th session of U.N. General Assembly.

Earlier, Erdoğan said he would address international peace and security issues at the U.N. General Assembly on the first day of the General Debate on Sept. 24.

US Senator Graham says he is trying to get Turkey back in F-35 fold
US Senator Graham says he is trying to get Turkey back in F-35 fold

Erdoğan vows to unmask FETÖ worldwide

Erdogan also on Sept. 22 vowed to unveil the true face worldwide of FETÖ, the group behind 2016 defeated coup in Turkey.         

Erdoğan was speaking at an event organized by Turkish American National Steering Committee (TASC) and Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB) in New York.         

The president said FETÖ has abused Turkish people for 40 years, touting service education, and financial favor and built a criminal network operating in 150 countries across the world.         

"The biggest feature of FETÖ is that it has no sacred value, [it has a] principle to abuse. [Telling] Lies, slander, [and] hypocrisy are their characteristics," said Erdoğan.         

"Together with you, we will unmask in the entire world this terror group, which martyred 251 people on July 15 night."          

"Until all coup plotters are brought to justice, we will not quit going after them," said the president.         

FETÖ and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gülen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people killed and nearly 2,200 injured.         

Ankara accuses FETÖ of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.         

Erdoğan said Turkey is taking necessary steps for extradition of Gülen and to halt its all operations in the U.S.         

Later, the president told reporters that pro-FETÖ figures in the U.S. are making efforts to harm Ankara-Washington relations and cause unrest among Muslims.         

Earlier, Turkish Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun also said that Gülen's cult uses American taxpayers' money and therefore his cult is not only Turkey's problem but Americans' as well.    

Gülen cult uses American taxpayers' money: Presidential aide
Gülen cult uses American taxpayers money: Presidential aide

In his remarks, Erdoğan said Turkey will also continue to back Palestinian cause, saying Palestine is a "red line" for Turkey.         

"No power, threat can prevent us from protecting the law of Palestine," said Erdoğan.         

"Jerusalem cause is not only the cause of a handful of Muslims in Palestine but the dignity of the 1.7-billion Islamic world."         

He also said Turkey continues to seek justice for murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and Mohammad Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected prime minister.         

Morsi died of a sudden heart attack in June while he was in court. He was ousted in a military coup in 2013.         

Khashoggi, a U.S. resident and contributor to The Washington Post, who was killed and dismembered by a group of Saudi operatives shortly after he entered the consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.         

Speaking about terror groups, the Turkish president said that besides harming Muslims, the groups such as Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, al-Shabab and FETÖ provide enemies of Islam ground for abuse.