By Michael Hernandez
WASHINGTON (AA) - The group behind the defeated July 15 coup is not just a danger for Turkey, but one for "all countries" where it is present, a deputy chair of Turkey's ruling party said Wednesday.
"This is a dangerous organization. It is dangerous not only for Turkey, but also for the all countries in which they operate," AK Party deputy chair for foreign affairs Cevdet Yilmaz said during a virtual panel discussion hosted by the SETA DC think tank.
"What they have done in Turkey they are doing in all countries in which they operate: on the one hand they are doing education and other activities, and on the other hand they are infiltrating into security structures and state structure," he said.
"That is why the US and any other country should investigate their ties within their country, especially their connections to the administrative staff within their own context, because one day or another they will use this and they will destabilize these countries and harm their democracies."
The Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated July 15, 2016 coup, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Turkey also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police and judiciary.
Also addressing the panel discussion Burhanettin Duran, SETA's general coordinator, said the coup attempt is "a very clear starting point to understand Turkey's orientation in the last four years."
Duran said that after reactions from the US and West that Turkey and its people considered disappointing there was renewed demand for independent "self-help."
"Yes, there were many problems stemming from the regional turbulence in the surrounding of Turkey," he said.
"But what is very clear to Turkish people, Turkey should try to address to these problems by its independent decision, independent will, because other allies, other friends, even their democracies, would not help," he added.