During meetings with top US officials in January, Jordan’s King Abdullah said Turkey was exporting extremist militants to Europe, according to a report by Middle East Eye.
King Abdullah said the refugee crisis facing Europe was not an accident, and neither was the presence of militants in their midst. “The fact that terrorists are going to Europe is part of Turkish policy and Turkey keeps on getting a slap on the hand, but they are let off the hook,” he said.
The king made his remarks to the US Congress on January 11, after a planned meeting with US President Barack Obama was cancelled. When asked by a congressman whether Daesh was exporting oil to Turkey, Abdullah replied, “absolutely.”
Abdullah went on to say that he believed Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sought a “radical Islamic solution to the region,” adding that Turkey presented a strategic challenge in the war in Syria.
News of the meeting comes a week after a new deal brokered by the EU and Turkey was implemented, with Greece rounding up migrants to be deported back to Turkey. In exchange, Turkey is to receive some $7 billion in aid to support the 2.7 million refugees living in the country, as well as expedited plans for visa-free travel to the EU for Turkish citizens.
Turkey, meanwhile, has been the scene of six major bombings over the last eight months, claimed by Daesh or militant offshoots of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) against whom Turkey has been involved in an intense military campaign in the southeast since last summer.
Turkey has not officially commented on King Abdullah’s remarks, but one senior official told Middle East Eye that he was becoming “the spokesman for Bashar al-Assad.”