Turkey “deplores” the adoption by the House of Representatives of an amendment that proposes to categorize the Turkish ultranationalist and fascist Grey Wolves as a terrorist organization.
“It is deplorable and worrisome that such a groundless amendment that goes against the spirit of the alliance between Turkey and the US could even be considered in House of Representatives,” Tanju Bilgic, a spokesperson for Turkey’s foreign ministry said.
“Such initiatives from anti-Turkish lobbies, first embraced by some European circles and now in the US, harm our common fight against terrorism,” said Bilgic. “Our ally, the U.S., and all countries should be resolute in their fight against true terrorist organizations such as the PKK/PYD/YPG and FETO, instead of giving credit to imaginary and defamatory allegations. This kind of prejudice against our people who are integrated in the countries they live in is unacceptable.”
The foreign ministry spokesperson said expressed hope that the final text of the bill will not include what he called “such a baseless provision” and added that any attempt to restrict the freedom of association and expression of the Turkish-American community should be avoided.
Last week the US House of Representatives adopted a number of amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act. Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV) led an amendment requiring a report by the Secretary of State on the activities Turkey’s Grey Wolves organization has undertaken against U.S. interests, allies, and international partners, including a review of the criteria met for designation as a foreign terrorist organization. The amendment had the support of a coalition of organizations including the Hellenic American Leadership Council, In Defense of Christians, American Friends of Kurdistan, Middle East Forum, as well as the ANCA, which circulated a detailed legislative brief to Congress in the days leading up to the vote.