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Democracies do not have place for terrorists: Turkey

STRASBOURG  

Turkish foreign minister on Tuesday said the participation of terrorists at side events in the Council of Europe reduces Turkey's confidence in the organization.

Speaking to reporters in Strasbourg, France, Mevlut Cavusoglu said he came to attend the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the Council of Europe, as the Honorary President of its Parliamentary Assembly.

During his meetings in Strasbourg, Cavusoglu said, he conveyed Turkey's uneasiness on the participation of terrorists at side events in the Council of Europe.

"Council of Europe is an organization which is home of democracy and democracies do not have a place for terror or terrorists," he stressed.

Cavusoglu said the participation of PKK terrorists or members of Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) at side events in the Council of Europe is “wrong”.

FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.

Cavusoglu said Council of Europe is the only organization embracing whole Europe.

However, political polarizations, rise of extreme right or left wing movements, racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia have started to reduce the importance of the Council of Europe.

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