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Macron is a sponsor of terrorism, says Turkish foreign minister

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Turkey’s foreign minister has accused French President Emmanuel Macron of being a “sponsor of terrorism”, dismissing the French leader’s criticism of Turkey’s Syria offensive.

Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters that Mr Macron wanted to be the leader of Europe but was “wobbling”.

Last month Mr Macron angered Turkey by hosting an official from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Turkey views a section of the group – the YPG – as terrorists.

The spat between Turkey and France comes in the week before the two Nato allies are due to attend a summit of the alliance in the UK.

Earlier on Thursday, Mr Macron said he stood by comments made three weeks ago when he described Nato as “brain dead”.

He said members of the alliance needed a “wake-up call” as they were no longer co-operating on a range of key issues.

He also criticised Nato’s failure to respond to the military offensive by Turkey in northern Syria.

Addressing reporters in parliament on Thursday, Mr Cavusoglu said: “He [Macron] is already the sponsor of the terrorist organisation and constantly hosts them at the Elysee. If he says his ally is the terrorist organisation… there is really nothing more to say.

“Right now, there is a void in Europe, [Macron] is trying to be its leader, but leadership comes naturally.”

Turkey was angered when Mr Macron held talks in Paris on 8 October with SDF spokeswoman Jihane Ahmed.

Mr Macron’s office said the meeting was to express France’s solidarity with the SDF in its fight against the Islamic State group, and also to reiterate concerns about the prospect of a Turkish military operation in Syria.

BBC

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