Greece harbours terrorists against Turkey, Ankara says

Greece harbours terrorist organisations, including the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) that operates attacks and suicide bombings against Turkey, Turkish Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun said.

“It’s time to end Greece’s impunity,” Altun said on Friday, via social media.

Fahrettin Altun shared a video prepared by the Communications Directorate that says some foreign countries assist organisations like the ISIS, the PKK and the Gülen Movement that Ankara blames for the failed coup of July 2016.

One country that stays as a heaven for these groups is Greece, according to the video.

Athens played a crucial role in helping the PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan in late 1990’s, avoiding Turkish authorities, the video said, “Today it continues to be a heaven for PKK with its so-called Lavrio refugee camp.”

Athens has also openly backed the Gülen Movement, many members of the organisation fled Turkey to Greece after the coup failed and despite Ankara’s extradition requests, they are still in the neighbouring country, it said.

In the video, Turkey called Greece to take action against the PKK and the Gülen Movement’s presence in its country and support Ankara’s fight against all forms of terror.

The PKK is an armed group that has been at war with Turkey for Kurdish self-rule for over three decades and designated as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the United States and the European Union. Over 40,000 people, mostly Kurds, have died in the conflict since 1984. 

PKK’s leader Abdullah Öcalan is serving a life sentence for treason and being kept in solitary confinement on the İmralı Prison island in northwestern Turkey, after being captured in 1999.

Turkish Islamist group Gülen Movement and its leader Fethullah Gülen who lives in self-imposed exile in the United States are blamed for orchestrating the failed coup of JULY 15, 2016 by Ankara.

Five days after the coup attempt, Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) declared a state of emergency and with the decrees issued during this period, some 80,000 people placed behind bars and more than 150,000 sacked from their state jobs as part of a crackdown on alleged members of the Gülen movement.

Turkey also requested the extradition of 807 members of the Gülen movement from 105 countries, more than half from the United States and Europe, according to Daily Sabah. In Europe, Germany came first with 77 extradition requests, then Greece with 64 and Belgium with 36, the newspaper said.