Turkey’s stance regarding the military takeover in Egypt is due to its own recent history, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan explained June 10, raising his rhetoric a notch against the interim rule in the country.
“A military coup has been staged in Egypt, although they don’t accept it. We have suffered a lot from military coups. We don’t want our Egyptian brothers to suffer from [them] as well. That’s the only matter,” Erdoğan said during a fast-breaking event organized by the civil servants’ union (Memur-Sen) in Ankara.
“I hope that steps will be taken to end the chaos,” he added.
Turkey had been the most vocal critic of the military takeover that toppled President Mohamed Morsi, who was elected as the candidate of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP). The party stood as the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, a powerful Islamist organization banned until the fall of Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
Erdoğan also asked the Egyptian rulers to render account on the killing of 53 pro-Morsi supporters by soldiers on July 8.
“In no place of the world are those who stage coups remembered with benevolence. At first there are some toadies who emerge, but years after everyone ends up cursing them. That’s also the fate that awaits [those who staged the coup in Egypt],” Erdoğan said, also accusing those who supported the military’s takeover.
“The coup stagers will sooner or later be tried. Those who keep silent will be ashamed as long as they breathe. And in the end, they will find the people in front of them,” he added, drawing parallels with the period when the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) came to power.
“Those who intend to conduct operations find the people in front of them. We have said ‘That’s enough, the people have the floor.’ The ballot box will make the last decision,” Erdoğan said.
The prime minister’s speech came a day after the Egyptian Foreign Ministry summoned the Turkish ambassador to Cairo, asking Ankara to “not take sides.” Erdoğan had called on the new rulers of Egypt to immediately release Morsi, in custody at an undisclosed location since he was toppled, in another defiant speech over the week-end.