Erdogan: Turkey against all terror groups

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan described claims by international media groups that Turkey is supporting ISIL fighters as 'perception management'.

Erdogan: Turkey against all terror groups

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey is against all types of terrorism and terror groups, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said following Western media allegations that the country has been supporting ISIL militants.

Erdogan's comments came on Wednesday hours after Western media published the claims.

In an address to the Confederation of Turkish Tradesmen and Craftsmen, one of the most powerful non-governmental organizations in Turkey, Erdogan said: "We don't accept a concept like 'Islamic terrorism'.

"No one should equate Islam - the religion of peace - with terror."

He went on: "We cannot accept a concept like 'Sunni terror' or 'Shiite terror'. What is really important to us is that Islam and the principles of our religion are certain on these subjects."

"Some international media institutions try to equate Turkey with terrorism. There is no such thing as Turkey offering weapons and medical aid to terror groups."

'Perception management'

Referring to the 49 Turkish hostages held in Iraq by ISIL since June, Erdogan said: "Their fate is more important to us than everything."

In relation to his scheduled visit to the New York headquarters of the UN General Assembly for an international meeting on Monday, the President said: "We will discuss this attempt at 'perception management' with our interlocutors in bilateral meetings."

Referring to Turkey's 40-year battle against PKK terrorism, and the country's efforts to resolve it via its "solution process", he said: "Turkey was left alone in its fight against terrorism.

"The murders and mass killings were ignored by several countries and others even supported this terrorism."

"They now understand - too late - that one day such terrorism would turn its gun against them," he said.

'Political motives'

He continued: "Now they understand that we were right, but we will see how far they will support us in this fight.

"They've seen our rightfulness in Iraq and Syria. Turkey is against all types of terrorism, no matter where it comes from."

Erdogan also criticized credit rating agencies which have given negative evaluations of the Turkish economy, saying their views were based on political motives rather than economic realities.

He said: "We have already cut relations with one of these rating agencies (Standard and Poor's) when I was prime minister.

"We pay them money - as we are a member, we pay an annual fee to them. Turkey may cut its relations with two more of them, because we did not develop our economy with their help."

Moody's and Fitch, two New York-based international credit rating agencies, recently rated Turkey "negative" and "stable" respectively in August.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 17 Eylül 2014, 14:23