Fourth Anniversary Of The 15 July Coup Attempt
Turkey-Bangladesh cooperation in fighting terrorism and extremism
Every year on July 15, we commemorate our martyrs and their bravery on the night of the coup attempt. In Turkey and our diplomatic missions all around the world, July 15 is observed as "Democracy and National Unity Memorial Day". Memory of our martyrs is what keeps our will stronger than ever to preserve Turkish democracy.
Four important years have passed since the heinous 15 July coup attempt, which was carried out by the Fetullah G�len Terrorist Organisation (FETO). In the history of ninety-seven year-old Republic of Turkey, the coup attempt orchestrated by Fetullahist traitors on the night of 15 July 2016 was the most savage, treacherous and deadliest terrorist attack that Turkey has ever experienced which took 251 innocent lives and wounded thousands of people.
On that horrific night, the brainwashed militants affiliated with FETO murdered civilians from all ages who bravely took to the streets to protest and defend Turkish democracy. Their tanks crushed these innocent civilians. They attempted to assassinate the President of the Republic of Turkey, attacked the Prime Minister's vehicle, and used fighter jets to bomb the Turkish Parliament. The buildings of the National Intelligence Organization and Turkish National Police departments were attacked. Fighter jets bombed the Police Special Operations Center, the crucial counter-terrorism operational body of Turkey in Ankara, killing 55 police officers and injuring hundreds. The FETO coup plotters targeted public and private communication outlets, including TRT (state broadcasting channel) and CNN T�rk.
In response to the coup attempt, Turkish people from all ethnicities, religions and ideologies got united to overcome this trauma with solidarity. Turkish economy maintained its stable growth. All the evidence collected so far throughout the investigations and trials demonstrates that the bloodiest terrorist attack in the history of Turkey was orchestrated by FETO under the instructions of Fetullah G�len. Fetullah G�len is the ringleader of a clandestine, criminal and terrorist organization called FETO that is unprecedented in terms of its global reach, ambitions and methods.
FETO is present in around 160 countries, with thousands of schools, businesses, NGOs and media houses. Their modus operandi is the same all around the world. As they aim to infiltrate and enlarge their global economic and political influence, they constitute a direct security threat for the countries where they operate. By brainwashing young minds at the schools which they directly or indirectly run, FETO indoctrinated a large group of radical followers, who carried out the instructions of the organization's leadership in full obedience and violated all legal and moral norms. Graduates of these schools were able to infiltrate the most critical institutions of the State by stealing exam questions. Those considered as an obstacle to the organization were treacherously eliminated as FETO conspired against them.
FETO strengthened its economic and political influence by abusing the State's resources and authority for the wicked interests of the organization. On the 15th of July, we were able to grasp the sheer size of the secret structure established by FETO within our most critical institution, the Turkish Armed Forces.
The fight against FETO both inside and outside Turkey became and still is one of the main priorities of our State. We brought perpetrators of the 15 July coup attempt to justice on the basis of the rule of law, and unveiled FETO's organisational structure within governmental institutions. FETO's attempts to spread across all areas of the economy including education, media and banking sectors have been thwarted.
As a result of our ongoing fight against this clandestine organisation within our borders, FETO transformed itself in order to survive abroad through its international structure. The main objective of our efforts is to demonstrate and prove the fact that FETO poses a threat to the security of other countries where it remains active. The concrete examples gathered indicate that FETO does not hesitate to violate laws by acting almost like a secretive intelligence service and aims to establish political and economic zones of influence all around the world.
We continue to warn our friends against this structure. To this end, we have made around 16.000 initiatives at various levels to inform our partners around the world regarding the malicious intentions of FETO-affiliated entities and individuals. We have taken administrative measures and initiated legal proceedings to limit the manoeuvring space of the FETO terrorist organisation abroad and prevent its radical affiliates from transferring money and escaping justice. We have requested the extradition of the main FETO ringleaders from the countries where these individuals are located.
Countries that have investigated and monitored this group have often founded that they are involved in an extensive list of crimes such as money laundering, intimidation, bribery and passport/visa fraud. We are pleased to observe that the international community gradually understands that FETO is not a social movement that engages with education and charity, but rather a dark and insidious organisation with political and economic ambitions. We appreciate the support of our friends and allies on our rightful efforts against the imminent threat posed by FETO.
The Turkish Maarif Foundation maintains its activities all around the world to prevent any shortfalls resulting from the steps taken against FETO, especially in the field of education. FETO-affiliated schools and education centers in 38 countries were closed down or taken over by the relevant country. In 20 of these, the affiliated schools and education centers have been transferred to the Turkish Maarif Foundation. In addition, Turkish Maarif Foundation has opened schools in 22 countries.
We appreciate the support of Bangladesh in our fight against FETO-affiliated individuals and institutions. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's zero tolerance policy towards global terrorism is one of the key elements in our common political agenda. As close partners on the international fight against terrorism, Turkey and Bangladesh will continue to work together to curb global terrorism.
We remember with gratitude the support and solidarity message from Honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, addressed to our President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, sent shortly after the foiled coup attempt, supporting the legitimate government and people of Turkey on their commitment to defend Turkish democracy. This gesture is rooted in the historical friendship between Turkey and Bangladesh, which was reinforced by the invaluable assistance provided by the Bengali people during the Turkish War of Liberation.
Regardless of geography, military coups constitute stains in the history and collective consciousness of humanity. Military coups are an affront to the national will, curb human rights and freedoms, and eliminate the democratic order. July 15 has been a significant milestone in Turkey's struggle for freedom and democracy. We reiterate our hope that July 15 and many other examples of heinous attempts to crush the will of the people would perish all around the world.
HE Mustafa Osman Turan, Ambassador
of Turkey to Bangladesh