Turkiye’s foreign minister on Thursday lambasted the Greek Cypriot administration for hosting an office belonging to the YPG/PKK terrorist organization.
Speaking at a joint news conference with his Estonian counterpart Eva-Maria Liimets, Mevlut Cavusoglu said if Turkiye or the Turkish Cypriot side face any threat or attack from the Greek Cypriot side, “we will make them pay the price.”
“This price will be a heavy one, thus they (Greek Cypriot side) should not play with fire,” Cavusoglu added.
Without specifying the names, Cavusoglu said there are countries using terror groups as their proxies.
“Most recently, a terrorist group in Syria was supported under the pretext of fighting Daesh. But we, as Turkiye, wanted to be in solidarity in the fight against terrorism even with the countries with whom we have the worst relations … We do not support any terrorist organization,” he added.
Cavusoglu said that there are terror camps of PKK and DHKP-C in Greece, adding: “It has also been proven with documents that DHKP-C members trained there (in Greece) returned and carried out terrorist attacks in Turkiye.”
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Turkiye, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkiye, the US, and EU — has been responsible for the deaths of at least 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the PKK’s Syrian offshoot.
Cavusoglu also said that the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) terror group members do not only use Greece as a transit country, they also use it as a safe haven and live there.
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 injured.
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.
“Having these terror groups open offices and hosting them is like playing with fire. We already know that the Greek Cypriot side supports terrorist groups until today,” Cavusoglu said, and called on the Greek Cypriot administration to refrain from cooperating with terror groups.
“There may be problems on different issues that we cannot agree on. Our opinions are different, of course … But the issue of terrorism is a very different matter. This is purely a matter of security,” the Turkish minister said.
Cavusoglu also commented on his meeting with his Estonian counterpart as he hailed the bilateral relations between the two countries.
The Turkish minister noted that they once again demonstrated their will to improve the relations between Ankara and Tallinn in every field.
Pointing out that trade between Turkiye and Estonia was not affected much during the pandemic, Cavusoglu said that there was a significant increase in trade between the two countries last year.
Expressing his country’s will to continue working with aims to increase the trade volume with Estonia to $500 million, Cavusoglu announced that Turkiye’s Trade Minister Mehmet Mus will visit Estonia this year.
For her part, Liimets said that they addressed security concerns during the meeting.
Turkiye is a strong and very capable, very close ally at NATO, she said, adding her country values cooperation with Ankara.
“Our bilateral relations are very good and friendly,” the Estonian foreign minister said, and added that her country supports “Turkiye’s path to the European Union.”
Turkiye is a key partner for the European Union and cooperation with Turkiye is of great importance in many areas of mutual interest, she added.
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