TORONTO

Turkish missions in Canada on Thursday marked the fifth anniversary of the 2016 defeated coup attempt in Turkey staged by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO). 

The virtual event, moderated by Toronto Religious Services Attache Cihan Yalcinkaya, gathered Turkish officials including Interim Charge d’affaires at the Turkish Embassy in Ottawa Pinar Yapici, Toronto Consul General Sinem Mingan, Montreal Consul General Sencer Yondem, Vancouver Consul General Taylan Tokmak, and some attaches.

A commemoration ceremony began with a moment of silence for the victims and the recital of the national anthem.

With the July 15 treacherous coup bid, it was once again revealed what a great threat and danger FETO is to Turkey, Pinar said.

Pinar said “251 people were martyred that night. Our institutions and civilians were shelled. But our nation has demonstrated with great determination how committed it is to democracy. That night, our people made it clear to the whole world that the coup period is over.

“Our fight against FETO continues in the international arena as well. As missions abroad, we tell our interlocutors that FETO is not a charity and educational institution but a terrorist and criminal network,” she added.

The Turkish Consulate General in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver also held narrow-scoped events for Turkey’s July 15 Democracy and National Unity Day due to the coronavirus pandemic.

FETO and its US-based leader, Fetullah Gulen, orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016 in which 251 people were killed and 2,734 wounded.

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.

Gulen has lived in self-exile in the US near Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania since 1999.

Since the coup attempt, Turkey has sought Gulen’s extradition and complained that Washington is not moving fast enough.

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