Meanwhile Erdogan is changing the subject by telling Europe to do something about “Islamophobia” before criticizing Turkey’s approach to freedom of the press.
Turkish President Recep Tayip Erdogan slammed European countries on Friday for criticizing deteriorating press freedom in Turkey and said they should instead try to find a solution for what he said was increasing Islamophobia in the continent.
Turkish police earlier this month raided media outlets close to US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Erdogan accuses of forming a ‘parallel state’ to undermine his rule and orchestrating a graft scandal targeting his inner circle.
The European Union, which Turkey has been seeking to join for decades, said the media raids ran counter to European values, a criticism already dismissed by Erdogan. On Friday, the President repeated his discontent, with a visibly harsher tone.
Well, maybe he’s embarrassed about that schoolboy arrested for saying something harsh about him.
“We are not Europe’s scapegoat,” Erdogan told a symposium of civil servants. “We are definitely not a country that Europe can point its finger at and scold. Instead of criticizing us, Europe should find a solution to increasing racism and Islamophobia.”
Meh. “Europe” isn’t a thing that can point a finger or scold anyway, but if it were…it could do that. The EU can do that, the ECHR can do that, heads of state can do that, journalists can do that, rights activists can do that. Actually, anybody at all can do that…unless they’re actually in Turkey, of course.