President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told the European Parliament to know its limits on Saturday, making it clear that the Turkish government rules the country, not the European body.
Erdogan made the remarks during a speech in Istanbul following the non-binding motion passed this week in the European Parliament that urged a freeze in the EU’s accession talks with Turkey.
“Saying ‘don’t fight terrorism’ to a country who fights against terror every day is to tell them to put up the shutters,” he said.
“Are you [European Parliament] inviting terrorist groups?” he asked.
Adopted on Thursday by 479 votes to 37, with 107 abstentions, the European Parliament’s motion had called on “the [European] Commission and on the member states to initiate a temporary freeze of the ongoing accession negotiations with Turkey.”
In the motion, members of European Parliament strongly condemned the alleged “disproportionate repressive measures” taken by the Turkish government since the July 15 failed coup attempt. These “violate basic rights and freedoms protected by the Turkish Constitution”, they claimed.
Erdogan told the European Parliament that the Turkish government and parliament could extend the term of its state of emergency. Turkey is in the second three-month term of its state of emergency, after foiled coup attempt and terror attacks.
“The government and parliament can extend the length of state of emergency. What’s it to you? Does the European Parliament rule this country or the government [of Turkey]? Know your limits! Those days are over,” he said.
The Turkish president said Turkey would continue to “go on its way no matter what they say”, in accordance with its centennial independence anniversary goals of 2023.