Deputy PM says Moody’s credit downgrading of Turkey work of ‘higher mind’

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Numan Kurtulmuş

Deputy Prime Minister and government spokesperson Numan Kurtulmuş has criticized US-based credit rating agency Moody’s recent decision to cut Turkey’s sovereign credit rating to non-investment grade, describing the decision as the work of a “higher mind.”

Global credit rating agency Moody’s on Friday joined S&P to put Turkey’s credit rating in junk territory.

“Moody’s Investors Service has today downgraded the Government of Turkey’s long-term issuer and senior unsecured bond ratings to Ba1 from Baa3 and assigned a stable outlook,” a written statement from the company said.

On Monday, Kurtulmuş joined other government officials who criticized the credit-rating agency’s decision on Turkey and indicated that it was linked with plotters of a failed coup attempt on July 15.

“Just as we eliminate the effects of that despicable coup attempt one by one, we know that the higher mind that plotted the coup attempt will do anything to create the perception that the Turkish economy is on a bad course. In this context, Moody’s decision is political and does not reflect the realities of the Turkish economy,” said Kurtulmuş.

Another deputy prime minister, Nurettin Canikli, argued on Saturday that the Gülen movement could be behind Moody’s decision.

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, which launched a war against the Gülen movement following the eruption of a corruption scandal in late 2013 in which senior government members were implicated, carried its ongoing crackdown on the movement and its sympathizers to a new level after a failed coup attempt on July 15 that killed 240 people and injured a thousand others.

Although the movement strongly denies having any role in the putsch, the government accuses it of having masterminded the foiled coup despite the lack of any tangible evidence.

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