Turkish NBA player Enes Kanter Freedom once again made his feelings about Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan known.
The Turkish basketball player cannot even visit his own country or communicate with his family as he has been labeled a "Gulenist".
Fethullah Gülen is considered by Erdoğan to be the "leader of terrorists" of the FETÖ organisation
He is the leader of a powerful movement in Turkey, which has a huge network of schools in his homeland, but also around the world, non-governmental organisations and businesses called Hizmet (in Turkish it means "service") and has a great influence in the media, the police and the judiciary.
His followers are known as "Gulenists".
Enes Kanter spoke to Alpha and, speaking about what the Turkish president said at the UN, emphasised that the Turkish president distorts reality.
"What Erdoğan said about Greece and Greek people at the United Nations was really unacceptable and disgusting," he said to Alpha. "He does not respect human rights. There are so many political prisoners in Turkey. There is no democracy in my Turkey."
"He does not talk about any of that, but talks about Greece. To me, Greek people and Greece opened their arms for all immigrants. To me, Greek people and Greece from day one, they opened their arms for all immigrants in the world and given them a warm welcome."
The Turkish president used the speaker’s podium during the United Nations General Assembly in New York to attack Greece on Tuesday.
“Greece is turning the Aegean into a cemetery for migrants,” said Erdogan, stating that Greece “with its illegal pushbacks increases the violence against migrants in the Aegean.” Erdogan also stated that apart from the “inhumane pushbacks,” Greece is pursuing a policy of “political repression and discrimination” against its Muslim community.
“Whoever tries to conduct shows of force in the area, are not equal and have no relations militarily or politically and makes themselves a joke. In the Eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean, a continued stability and peace depends on the respect of everybody’s rights and interests,” said Erdoğan, adding that “we call on Greece to cease its policy of provocations and tension and to respond to the call for cooperation and support.”
“Turkey will defend its rights and interests to the very last in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean and will not be entrapped in the games of those who pursue a strategy of tension for political gains,” he stressed.
Greece hit back at Turkey over what the government spokesperson termed a “crescendo of vulgarity” by the Turkish president at the UN General Assembly in New York on Tuesday.
The statements made at the United Nations were “an unprecedented attempt to spread fake news, a complete distortion of reality and crude propaganda from the UN General Assembly with completely groundless claims,” government spokesperson Yiannis Economou said on Wednesday.
He accused Turkey of “instrumentalising refugees and migrants, and providing support for human traffickers.”
By contrast, he said, Greece “saves human lives and guards, as it is obliged to do, [at] the borders of Greece and Europe.”
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis took the podium on Friday in New York where he addressed the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly and extended an olive branch to Turkey amid escalating tensions, but not before warning the Turkish government not to cross red lines.
"If President Erdoğan wants to talk about red lines," the Greek premier noted, "then I say this: Turkish claims over the sovereignty of Greece’s islands are baseless and unacceptable. Questioning the sovereignty of Greek territory crosses a red line for all Greeks."
In his address, Mitsotakis covered everything from the European Union's response to authoritarianism and a threat to democracy, Turkey's escalating aggression, the threat of climate change and the migration crisis
Mitsotakis described Turkey's aggressive rhetoric as one that was "combined with a massive disinformation campaign, and multiple violations of Greece’s sovereignty and sovereign rights at sea and in the air," as well as the instrumentalisation of migration flows, and a unilateral decision to refuse all high-level contacts.
At the same time, he assured the Turkish people that Greece "poses no threat to your country" and called on its leadership to honour a long history and to "move forward in a spirit of mutual respect."