Erdoğan target of neo-Crusaders, Nazis and Zionists, says senior official

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is being targeted by neo-crusaders, neo-Nazis and neo-Zionists, communications director for the Turkish Presidency Fahrettin Altun said on Sunday.

"Today, our President  Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is on the target of neo-Crusaders, neo-Nazis and neo-Zionists. They are working in cooperation to divert our president from his path. They are trying every method. Neither a death threat, nor anything else will turn our president [away],’’ Altun wrote on Twitter.

The chairman’s comments follow Erdoğan’s statements on the Christchurch, New Zealand mosque attacker, who killed 50 people and injured dozens in an attack that was live-streamed on Friday, stunning the world.

Australian Brenton Harrison Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, "targeted our country, our nation and myself," the Turkish president said on Friday.

The Turkish president was named as a target in Tarrant’s “manifesto” published online by the attacker before the killings, reports indicate. 

Erdoğan on Saturday screened a montage of videotaped snippets from the attack during a campaign rally for his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) ahead of March 31 local elections, in a move seen as an attempt to galvanise his religious supporters.

Ankara has launched its own investigation following reports that Tarrant entered Turkey twice in 2016 - for a week in March and for more than a month in September.