Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of Turkey, has claimed that terrorists who attempted to oust him out of office are operating illegally as criminals in Nigeria.
President Erdoğan made the allegation at a joint press conference with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Wednesday during his two-day visit to Nigeria.
The Turkish President had in 2016 accused allies of the renowned cleric, Fethullah Gulen, who own Turkish schools and hospitals across Nigeria, of sponsoring the coup.
Speaking through an interpreter, Erdoğan said his country is willing to offer the necessary support to Nigeria to assist in the country’s fight against insurgency and other armed groups.
He added that his administration would share intelligence with Nigerian authorities.
He said: “As Turkey, we have been closely monitoring the development in Nigeria, our brotherly and friendly nation. The terrorist organisations, the armed gangs and the marine vendors are continuously active in Nigeria and the Nigerian authorities are continuously fighting them.
“In order to cooperate further in the field of military operations, defence and security, we are doing everything that will be available. We are ready to share our capabilities, every extending capacity as Turkey with Nigeria, especially in the field of defence, industry and security which are being praised by the globe.
“On this occasion, I also would like to take this opportunity once again to extend my most heartfelt condolences to our brothers and sisters of Nigeria who have lost their lives as a result of terrorist attacks. I hope and pray that Allah will bestow upon those who stayed behind the utmost patience and strength.
“We are ready to share our ever expanding capabilities with Nigeria, especially in the field of defence industry and security which are being praised by the entire globe. This sensitivity that we showcase in fighting terrorism, I hope will be reciprocated by our Nigerian brothers and sisters and our counterparts.
“As you are probably aware, Turkey has been fighting against terrorist organisations for many many decades such as the PKK, PYD, FETO, Daesh and other terrorist organisations.
“The perpetrator of the heinous failed coup of July 15, FETO, is still illegally active in Nigeria. And we are continuously sharing our intelligence with the Nigerian authorities. I hope and pray that our Nigerian brothers will forge a closer solidarity in this field with us.”
The Turkish President stated that he is hopeful that the relations between Nigeria and Turkey would be further developed on the basis of a win-win situation and on the basis of mutual respect.
In his speech, President Buhari revealed that he signed eight major agreements/Memoranda of Understanding on several key sectors including energy, defense industry, mining and hydrocarbons among others.