Erdogan: New documents on top FETO member revealed

Turkish president speaks two days ahead of elections in joint broadcast of TRT channels

Erdogan: New documents on top FETO member revealed

By Hulya Corakci Ertan


President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Friday that new information about a top accused plotter of the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey has been revealed.

During a joint interview with the state-run TRT, TRT1, TRT Haber and TRT World news channel, Erdogan said new documents related to Kemal Batmaz would be published in the coming days.

Batmaz is the accused second-in-command of the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) -- the group that orchestrated the defeated coup in Turkey of July 15, 2016 which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

“With these documents about Kemal Batmaz, they [FETO] will be backed into a corner," he added.

During the interview, Erdogan also slammed the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and its presidential candidate Muharrem Ince for not including the fight against terrorism and the fight against the defeated coup of July 15 in their campaigns.

Speaking about the struggles the Kurdish people faced before the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party came to power, Erdogan said the current government had improved their living standards.

Erdogan said that under his AK Party, “denial policies and policies of rejection” against Kurdish people were removed and assimilation of Kurdish people abolished, adding that Kurdish people today are free to speak their languages and live with cultural differences.

'Roadmap in Manbij'

Erdogan also spoke about the Turkish army's current patrol in Syria's northern city of Manbij.

"In Manbij, a roadmap has been identified, which is a 90-day roadmap. With this roadmap, the PYD and YPG will completely empty it (Manbij) and the residents will come and settle there -- 90-95 percent of them are Arabs," he said.

On Monday, Turkish and U.S. forces began patrols in Syria's Manbij in line with a deal that was first announced after a meeting in Washington last week between Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The Manbij deal focuses on the withdrawal of the PKK-affiliated YPG terror group from the city in order to stabilize the region.

Should the model prove to be a success, Turkey will push for a similar arrangement in eastern Syria. In it's over 30-year terrorist campaign against Turkey, the PKK has taken some 40,000 lives, including those of women and children.

The YPG/PKK is its Syrian branch.

Turkey will vote in presidential and parliamentary elections on June 24.

Erdogan has served as president since 2014 -- Turkey's first popularly elected president. Before that, he served as prime minister from 2003 to 2014.

Should he win the June 24 elections, Erdogan would be Turkey's first leader under the presidential system, which does away with the prime minister's post, among other changes.

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