The US State Department’s 2021 Country Report on Terrorism is deliberately distorting Türkiye’s fight against terrorist organisations that pose a direct threat to its security, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tanju Bilgiç has said.
In a statement published on Friday, Bilgiç said that the report mentions terror group The Syrian Democratic Forces, The Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s Syrian wing, as partner against Daesh, revealing that the US still wants to use one terror group against another.
“It is not acceptable that US describes Turkish fight against Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) terrorists as political and expects US to end FETO’s presence and activities in its country immediately,” he said in the statement.
“The US report also includes hearsay claims and biased press reports raising doubts about US seriousness in fighting terror.”
In its more than 36-year terror campaign against Türkiye, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organisation by Türkiye, the US, and the EU – has been responsible for the deaths of at least 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.
The statement said that Turkey is actively combatting terrorist groups, particularly PKK/PYD/YPG, DHKP-C, FETO, and Daesh, in accordance with the law and making significant contributions to global efforts in the fight against terrorism.
Türkiye has long pressed the US for the extradition of Fetullah Gulen, FETO’s ringleader and the organiser of the July 15, 2016 defeated coup, in which 251 people were killed and 2,734 injured in the country.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.