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Turkish seeks Nigeria’s collaboration in fighting global terrorism

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lays a wrest of flowers at the July 15 Monument, in Ankara, on July 15, 2020, during the July 15 Democracy and National Unity Day’s events held to mark the fourth anniversary of the failed coup. – Turkey commemorates, the fourth anniversary of a coup attempt which was followed by a series of purges in the public sector. (Photo by Adem ALTAN / AFP)
The Turkish ambassador to Nigeria, Melih Ulueren, Wednesday, sought the collaboration of Nigerian government in crippling businesses belonging to the alleged mastermind of the July 15, 2016, aborted coup attempt in Turkey.
Noting that terrorism is the greatest enemy to humanity and peaceful co-existence Ambassador Ulueren emphasized that irrespective of their names and countries they belong, terrorists should be seen and treated as common enemies.
Speaking Wednesday at the occasion to mark the fourth anniversary of the coup, he cautioned the Nigerian government against dealing with the alleged enemy in the guise of business.
The ambassador sought the assistance of the Nigerian government in sealing off businesses reportedly belonging to Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETO) and subsequently handing over same to Turkish Maarif Foundation, which he said, is operating in 22 countries.
Since the thwarted coup attempt of July 15, 2016, and the subsequent declaration of FETO as a terrorist organisation in January 2017 by Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the envoy said several attempts have been made to contain the group by destroying its sources of income, one of which is schools scattered in various countries of the world.
He noted that while several other countries have complied, the Nigerian government is yet to do so.
Ulueren warned that while FETO disguised as an education movement, it has gradually turned into a secretive operational structure aiming to transform the society by taking control of the Turkish state from within.
“FETO is present in around 160 countries, having a strong presence also in Nigeria, with thousands of schools, businesses, NGOs and media houses.
“Their modus operandi is the same all around the world. As they aim to infiltrate and enlarge their global economic and political influence, they constitute a direct security threat for any country, including Nigeria, where they operate”, the envoy warned.
He added: “The fight against FETO structures abroad has been among the top priorities of our country.
“The main objective of our efforts is to demonstrate and prove the fact that FETO also poses a threat to the security of other countries, including Nigeria, where it remains active.
“We, therefore, continue to warn our friendly nations including Nigeria against this structure and thus, we are satisfied with the rising awareness against this group as a consequence of our efforts”
According to the ambassador, FETO affiliated schools and education centres in 38 countries were closed down or taken over by the relevant authority.
“In 20 of these, the affiliated schools and education centres have been transferred to the Turkish Maarif Foundation, which has opened schools in 22 countries.
He, therefore, assured the Nigerian government that workers in affected schools will not be affected in any way if the management of the schools are entrusted to the Turkish Foundation.
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