Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Wednesday slammed The New York Times for its report claiming that Turkey is one of the major sources of recruitment of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group, saying that some foreign media outlets are trying to depict Turkey as a country that supports terrorism.
“A newspaper in the US accuses us of supporting terror organisations by posting a photo of me and (Prime Minister Ahmet) Davutoglu leaving the Haci Bayram Mosque (in Ankara),” Erdogan said at a gathering in Ankara.
“They used this photo in a story about IS. This is shameless, sordid, and ignoble,” Xinhua quoted him as saying.
The New York Times story, published Monday, said Turkey has become a recruitment hub for the militant Islamist group and used a photo of the Turkish president and the prime minister leaving an Ankara mosque.
The article said that some 100 people have joined the ranks of IS from Haci Bayram Mosque.
Erdogan rejected the report, saying Turkey was against all types of terrorism and terrorist groups.
Citing his visit to New York Sunday for the UN General Assembly, the president said he would continue to meet leaders on the sidelines to clear misconceptions on the issue.