Writing in Foreign Policy, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu appeals to the new US administration to extradite the perpetrator of July 15’s failed coup. Not just for justice’s sake, but for the sake of the crucial Turkish-US bilateral relationship:
Today, the hydra-like Gülenist network is present in more than 160 countries. With its nerve center in Pennsylvania, its tentacles reach far and wide, exploiting poverty, fear, democratic deficits, and corruption. The responsibility for collecting evidence regarding these nefarious activities falls largely on the U.S. authorities, since Gülen and his close circle remain untouched in the United States.
Gülen and those in his network continue to run schools and profit from shady business transactions in the United States. They spread their propaganda from their safe haven in Pennsylvania — even as they are funded from federal, state, and local budgets through running an extensive network of charter schools. Turkish Gülenists immigrate to the United States to work in the schools, and are even invited to Congress to lecture U.S. policymakers on Turkey and Turkish-U.S. relations.
Turkey sees the United States as an ally that has been at the forefront of defending democracy and the rule of law. Turkey stood by its ally, at times incurring heavy costs, when the United States faced grave threats to its national security. For many decades, Turkey and the United States stood shoulder-to-shoulder in combating terrorism and organized crime. We are fighting against al Qaeda and Daesh in Syria and Iraq, and countering extremism of all kinds across the globe together.
Fetullah Gülen, who was declared by his cult as the “Imam of the Universe,” has attempted to destroy democracy in Turkey. The people of Turkey expect the U.S. authorities to take effective legal measures against this threat to our security and democracy, as an ally should.