Turkey officially demands US extradites Gulen

19/07/2016 - 17:24 Published in News/General

Turkey’s prime minister confirmed on Tuesday that an official request has been sent to the U.S. for the extradition of Fetullah Gulen, a key suspect being linked to Friday's failed coup attempt.

Chairing the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party group meeting at the parliament in Ankara, Binali Yildirim criticized the U.S. for "insistently" asking Turkey to provide evidence of the Pennsylvania-based cleric's involvement in the attempted coup before extraditing him.

"It is already clear," Yildirim said, adding: "However, we will provide them with a pile of evidence."

On Monday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said in Brussels that his country has "a formal process for dealing with extradition requests" and that Turkey "must send evidence, not allegations".

Yildirim responded on Tuesday: "I would like to ask my American friends: Did you look for evidence when demanding the terrorists who carried out the September 11 [2001] attacks?

"We have no doubt on the source of this vicious coup and we know all the details over who guided it and how."

The government says Friday’s failed coup was organized by followers of Gulen, who is accused of pursuing a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through supporters within Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary. 

"Do not protect that traitor any longer. That is no use for you, as well," the Turkish premier said.

"Every coup, without exception, is bad and murderous. But none of the coup attempts in our political history was as vicious as the one on July 15. None of them was guided by a traitor who is in the shape of a cleric [...] None of them bombed the Turkish parliament."