Biden says Turkey has provided 'concrete evidence' on Gülen

Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ has said US Vice President Joe Biden told him Turkey has provided sufficient evidence that Gülen was the mastermind behind July's failed coup attempt.

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Turkey's Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag answers journalists' questions outside of the Peninsula Hotel in New York on September 22, 2016.

Turkey's Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ, answering questions from journalists in the US, has said that Vice President Joe Biden agreed that Turkey had provided sufficient evidence that Fetullah Gülen was the mastermind behind the failed coup attempt of July 15.

The failed putsch left 240 people dead and nearly 2,200 others injured.

"We have enough information, documentation and proof showing Fetullah Gulen is the leader of this terror group which tried to carry out a coup," Bozdağ said, referring to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), which Ankara has said was behind the failed coup attempt.

"Mr Biden also accepted and stated that there was concrete evidence."

​Bozdağ, who is accompanying Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on a visit to New York for the annual UN General Assembly summit, added that Turkey expects the US to take the necessary "second step" of arresting Gülen.

"We hope that it won't be delayed and happen shortly. We requested a temporary arrest of ​Gülen because of the July 15 coup bid and him masterminding it. He is a terrorist who conducted the coup bid from Pennsylvania."

Ankara maintains the failed coup attempt was organised by followers of Gülen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in the state of Pennsylvania since 1999.

Gülen is also accused of leading a long-running campaign to overthrow the Turkish state by forming a parallel state through infiltrating institutions including the military, police and judiciary.

AA, TRTWorld and agencies