Turkey says Macron is sponsor of terrorism, dismisses his Syria criticism
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on Thursday accused French President Emmanuel Macron of being a sponsor of terrorism, dismissing his criticism of Turkey's Syria offensive, Sabah daily reported.
“He is already the sponsor of the terrorist organization and constantly hosts them at the Elysee. If he says his ally is the terrorist organization... there is really nothing more to say,” Çavuşoğlu told reporters at the Turkish parliament.
During a joint press conference with the NATO secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg, Macron on Wednesday said Turkey could not expect solidarity from NATO allies while launching an offensive in Syria.
"One cannot on one hand say that we are allies, and with respect to this demand our solidarity; and on the other hand, put its allies in the face of a military offensive done as a 'fait accompli', which endangers the action of the coalition against Islamic State, which NATO is part of," Macron said.
And, the French leader in April hosted representatives from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) that spearheads the fight against the Islamic State and France was among the first countries to strongly condemn Turkey's latest offensive in northeast Syria targeting the SDF and its affiliates, which Ankara sees as offshoots of outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
Ankara on Nov. 26 blocked a NATO defence plan for the Baltics and Poland over lack of political support for its fight against Kurdish forces in northern Syria.
“We are not against this NATO plan for the Baltics. However, what is being requested for the Baltic countries should also be done for us. We are also allies,” Cavuşoğlu said.