Turkey, US top law officials talk Gulen extradition

Turkey’s justice minister says Ankara wants US courts to process evidence submitted on terror leader

Turkey, US top law officials talk Gulen extradition

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey’s Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said Wednesday that he had “a productive conversation” with his American counterpart, Loretta Lynch, regarding the extradition of the leader of the Fetullah Terror Organization (FETO), Fetullah Gulen.

“We discussed Turkey’s requests about extradition as well as his temporary detention,” Bozdag said at a news conference with Turkish press in Washington.

Ankara has accused Gulen for plotting a failed bloody coup attempt in Turkey in July.

Bozdag said he also expressed to Lynch that it is not acceptable for American authorities to drag their feet on the extradition request.

“For the first time a Turkish justice minister visits a country for extradition of a criminal residing in that country,” Bozdag said, noting the importance of the case to the Turkish government.

Bozdag said American leaders understand Turkey’s concerns, noting that experts of the two countries would work together on the case.

Turkey does not want the U.S. to hand over Gulen by bypassing the court system, Bozdag said. Turkey wants American courts to process the evidence Ankara provided against the terror leader.

“We have submitted sufficient even more than sufficient, evidences to have him [Gulen] detained,” he said.

Bozdag also shared Turkey’s concerns that Gulen might flee the U.S., adding that Ankara has intelligence that the FETO leader is in a search for a asylum in a number of countries, including Belgium, Canada and Brazil.

The minister presented tableau to his counterpart that depicts the text of an agreement signed between the Ottoman Empire and the U.S. in 1874 regarding extradition of criminals.

Turkey’s documents includes evidence Gulen’s network established a quasi-state within the Turkish state in an attempt to topple the government and ultimately tried to take over the state via a bloody coup.

Turkish authorities also issued an official request for Gulen’s extradition under a 1979 treaty between Turkey and the U.S.

During his four-day visit, Bozdag will attend a panel discussion on the July 15 coup attempt, organized by the Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) and inaugurate Anadolu Agency's photo exhibit in Washington on "The Rise of the National Will".

At least 241 people were martyred and nearly 2,200 injured in the failed coup, which Turkey said was organized by followers of Gulen.

Gulen has led a long-running campaign to overthrow the Turkish government through the infiltration of state institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary, forming what is commonly known as the parallel state.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 27 Ekim 2016, 11:29