Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtas for his allegations over the Suruc suicide bombing in Turkey's southeast that claimed 32 lives.
Speaking to reporters before his Turkey-China business forum, during a state visit to Beijing on Thursday, Erdogan said "These statements are vulgar. I want to express that the presidency is a very high position and should not to be dishonored like this.”
At his party’s group meeting on July 28, Selahattin Demirtas blamed President Erdogan for the Suruc suicide bombing which targeted leftist youth organizations who had gathered in the Suruc district of Turkey’s southeastern Sanliurfa province before crossing into the Syrian border for “rebuilding” the Syrian province of Kobani that is under the control of pro-Kurdish militants.
"He needs to know his position. To voice imputations like this, to a president that only has worked for his country's peace and prosperity, is just an attempt to remove the black clouds above him,” Erdogan added.
Erdogan told reporters that Demirtas is responsible for the October 2014 Kobani protests that claimed 50 lives.
In October 2014, Demirtas’ call of the HDP for a rally in support of the Kurdish city of Kobani in Syria against the advance of ISIS had sparked violent protests in southeastern Turkey. A total of 50 people were brutally killed and many were injured in the demonstrations throughout Turkey.
Erdogan also underlined what he considered Demirtas' failure to label the outlawed PKK as a "terrorist group" - unlike the United States and European Union, who recognize it as such.
Meeting with China’s Uighur and Hui Muslim communities
Meanwhile, Erdogan made a comment on his meeting with representatives of China's Uighur and Hui Muslim community during his official visit to Beijing.
Stating that he found the situation hopeful, Erdogan said “The representatives informed us that there are around 35 thousand mosques and 40 thousand religious officials in China. The Muslim community in China is in touch with Turkish directorate of religious affairs.”
The sources stated that during the meeting with Chinese officials, Turkey has also voiced concerns over reports that members of China's Muslim community had been banned from fasting during holy month of Ramadan.
They added that Erdogan's meeting with representatives from China's Uighur and Hui Muslim communities was welcomed by Chinese officials.
Erdogan’s visit to China came a few weeks after tensions over China's treatment of its Muslim Uighur people who have close cultural and religious ties with Turks.
China’s alleged bans over Uighur Muslims were protested across the country by hundreds of Turkish people who demanded China to stop the discrimination against its Muslim population.