Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that those slandering Turkey must prove their claims that the country buys oil from the DAESH terrorist group or resign their offices as fair politics require.
Erdogan said that "If those slandering Turkey can prove the accusations, I will resign just as I said earlier during the summit in Paris, but if they can’t, then they have to step down as fair politics require that.’’
Erdogan’s recent comments came just after Russian Defence Ministry provided some maps on Wednesday, claiming to show DAESH oil is being smuggled into Turkey through PYD controlled areas.
"Turkey is the main consumer of the oil stolen from its rightful owners, Syria and Iraq,’’ said Russian Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov in a press conference.
Upon that, an official from US Department of Defense said on Wednesday that ‘’We refuse the claim that Turkey cooperates with DAESH over oil smuggling as we have not found any proof regarding that,’’ while the Pentagon called the claim "preposterous, untrue and ridiculous."
"We know that Turkey takes every necessary step to provide the security of border with Syria in cooperation with its partners.’’ the official said.
Furthermore, the US also imposed sanctions on supporters of Syrian President Bashar al Assad's regime to buy oil from DAESH, including a Russian bank that financed the regime, the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OPAC) said last week.
Russian Financial Alliance Bank and two individuals, Mudalal Khuri and Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who hold shares and manage the bank, are also among those targeted for their role in financial transactions with the Syrian regime.
Tension between Turkey and Russia rose after Turkish F-16 fighter jets shot down a Russian SU-24 over violation of Turkish air space along the Syria border, despite repeated warnings.
Since then, Turkish and Russian leaders have been exchanging accusations of helping terrorists in Syria.
Referring to Turkey’s downing of the Russian warplane, Putin said that “We have every reason to believe that the decision on whether to shoot down our plane was dictated by the desire to ensure the safety of these oil supply routes to Turkish territory."
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan responded this claim by saying “You should discuss these matters with Assad whom you have been supporting. Because they [DAESH] are selling it to him and they get the money from him. Their financial source is obvious.”
“We never wanted to come to this point. But if you are looking for someone behind DAESH's financial and weaponry sources, the first ones to be suspected should be the Assad regime and countries who support them,” Erdogan continued.