Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has alleged that presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s past remarks advocating a new approach to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan amount to proof that the US indeed tried to mount a coup d’état in Turkey, the pro-government Hürriyet newspaper reported on Sunday.
Çavuşoğlu claimed Biden’s emphasis on defeating Erdoğan means that they did in fact attempt a coup against the Turkish leader, presumably referring to the failed coup of July 2016 during which Biden was vice president in the Barack Obama administration.
“As the Turkish nation we categorically reject such impositions,” Çavuşoğlu said. “This is a statement that oversteps boundaries.”
Biden’s comments to New York Times editors resurfaced in a video that made him the most popular topic on Twitter in Turkey, where Erdoğan has governed for 17 years and has good relations with US President Donald Trump.
Biden in the video raises concern about Erdoğan’s approach to the Kurdish minority in Turkey, his military cooperation with Russia and access to US airfields located in the country, a NATO ally.
Turkey’s pro-Erdoğan media has repeatedly published reports blaming the Obama administration for the 2016 attempted coup, particularly after Trump took office in January 2017.