Written by By Staff Writer, CNN
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has ordered that 10 ambassadors associated with the resistance movement to his government be declared persona non grata.
It is Erdogan’s latest salvo in a political battle with the movement and its supporters. The exiled leader of the movement, US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, says the Turkish state is the main obstacle to Turkey’s further development and accuses Erdogan of building a “fascist dictatorship.”
The order gives Ankara 90 days to expel the ambassadors, but each country will determine their final fate.
A source told CNN that Turkey would not give up its protest of a Turkish court ruling ordering the release of Abdullah Ocalan, one of Turkey’s most-wanted men
Ocalan was jailed for life in 1999 on charges of leading a violent separatist group. He is currently imprisoned in a hospital in northern Turkey.
“We are not going to make any compromise on the case of our imprisoned leader Abdullah Ocalan. We will not give our leader up to the whitewash the systematic killing and murder of more than 40,000 (people),” Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said in a post on Facebook.
“This is nothing but a huge snub and insult,” Ocalan’s daughter, Berber Dagdeviren, told CNN.
On Sunday, Erdogan announced that a Turkish court had granted his government’s demand for a speeding up of the release of 12 detainees who have been held since 1999.
The 10 ambassadors and their respective countries who the president declared persona non grata are:
Iran’s acting ambassador in Ankara, Hossein Ghorbanali
Japan’s ambassador in Ankara, Yoichi Fukuda
Netherlands’ ambassador in Ankara, Arne Delottubal
United States’ deputy ambassador in Ankara, Pamela Hubbard
Bangladesh’s acting ambassador in Ankara, Shafiqur Rahman
Bangladesh’s ambassador in Ankara, Mohammed Shafiul Azam
Egypt’s acting ambassador in Ankara, Mustafa Ahmad Zaki
Belgium’s ambassador in Ankara, Alexandra Péniczak
China’s ambassador in Ankara, He Youyong
Malaysia’s acting ambassador in Ankara, Razak Abdul Rahman
Speaking about the latest decision, Sidera Satramoglu, Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan, told CNN, “I haven’t read this yet but we don’t want relations with Turkey to deteriorate. However, in case our people are harmed, there are different options available.”