France accuses Turkey’s state-run news agency of fake news, gov’t propaganda

The French interior ministry has blasted Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency over what it called functioning as a mouthpiece for Ankara and targeting France with false news.

In a series of tweets, the French interior ministry-linked Interministerial Committee for the Prevention of Crime and Radicalization (CIPDR) said Anadolu was not a news agency, but "a propaganda body that publishes opinion pieces on its site attacking France in a deceptive and malicious manner."

CIPDR accused Anadolu of "spreading fake news about France," and referred specifically to the agency’s "claims that the country will target its Muslim citizens,’’ which it said was "intolerable."

In February France approved a law to crack down on what has been termed "Islamist separatism". The Turkish government condemned the law, saying it looked to target France’s Muslim community.

Turkish Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun slammed the CIPDR over the allegation.

"Why are the reports of the AA (Anadolu) bothering France?" the aide of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in a tweet.

"Why is France, which has become the centre of anti-Islamism and systematic discrimination against Muslims, targeting freedom of the press and opinion?’’ he added.

Altun urged the French government to stop promoting Islamophobia through state organs and to put an end to the pressure on Anadolu.