Erdogan slams Russia for dragging family in oil claims

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ANKARA

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has strongly denounced Russia for dragging the name of his family members into allegations of illegal oil dealings with the terrorist organization Daesh.

“Dragging my family into this issue is the unethical side of the incident; earlier, Iranian televisions [also] did it,” Erdogan said in his address in the capital Ankara Thursday.

The Turkish president recalled the Iranian reports and said he spoke with the Iranian president about the issue. “You [Iran] are in a huge mistake; if it continues like that, its response will be heavy. You, as Iran, will pay a heavy price,” Erdogan had told his Iranian counterpart.

He said that Iranian websites removed the reports after 10 days, adding that the stories were filled with “slander, lie and hypocrisy”.

He said that Turkey cannot ignore the incidents taking place in Syria and reiterated that Russia did not have to venture into Syria.

“You [Russia] did not have to accept the invitation by the killer [Bashar al-]Assad regime, who has killed 380,000 people,” Erdogan said.

“It is an illegal government, Russia should see that it is not legal,” Erdogan said and added he spoke about this issue with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, on several occasions.

He said that Turkey respected Syria’s sovereignty, but insisted there was no legal Syrian government in place. “The Assad regime cannot make a claim with its very little sovereignty in the country; now it has 14 percent dominance and the 86 percent one completely belongs to organizations there,” Erdogan said.

About the downing of Russian warplane that violated Turkish airspace on Nov. 24, Erdogan said, “no one expects Turkey to capitulate its sensitivity towards its sovereignty rights”.

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