The United States ambassador to Turkey John Bass has stated he cannot give details about the process of extraditing of Fethullah Gulen, a US based preacher of Turkish origin, but he could ensure “The process will be transparent,”and performed under the US legal framework during a press meeting organised by the Ankara Diplomacy Correspondents Association.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan asked the United States to extradite Gulen April 29, 2014 when he was prime minister during a visit to the United States.
The Turkish government alleges Fethullah Gulen established and leads a “parallel state,” composed of a network of followers who have infiltrated the judiciary, police force, and other state agencies and have attempted to take over these institutions.
Gulen’s followers are referred to as the Gulenists in Turkey.
Bass also commented on Turkey’s Kurdish-Turkish peace process, officially called the “Resolution Process,” saying: “We strongly support ‘Resolution Process’ and do not desire that it will transform into a violent process.”
In his comments Bass also touched on the Middle East, and said there is already much conflict in the region and additional conflicts should be avoided.
Turkey announced its peace process, at the beginning of 2013, following the previous “Democratic Initiative” started in July 2009 by the governing Justice and Development Party (AK Party) which said that it had a sincere desire to resolve the Kurdish question not only by means of security measures but also through negotiations.
The American ambassador also remaked upon the upcoming Turkish elections and said: “The American government supports the Turkish people. We support people who want the elections to be free, fair, and competitive.”
Bass also noted the debate in Turkey over the implementation of a presidential system and said, “We will respect the decision of the people. It does not matter the system will be presidential or parliamentary. What matters is to protect the system of check and balances.”
The Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, recently said that the parliamentary system has collapsed and the presidential system is the solution for Turkey’s political system.