Turkey's FM: Security leak linked with Syrian regime, al-Qaeda
Thursday, March 27, 2014
ANKARA - Turkey's foreign minister has said those who eavesdropped on a high-level security meeting of Turkish officials on Syria are "clearly linked with the Syrian regime and Al-Qaeda."
"Those behind this attack are cooperating with the enemies of Turkey," Ahmet Davutoglu said in a televised interview on a private channel on Thursday.
A video that appeared on YouTube earlier in the day showed that the meeting between Foreign Minister Davutoglu, intelligence chief Hakan Fidan and the armed forces’ second commander Yasar Guler was spied on while they were discussing possible threats to the Turkish territory in Aleppo, Syria.
Davutoglu said the leak was an attack on Turkey's national security and an investigation was underway.
He said the perpetrators of the snooping were “attempting to create the perception of a ‘weak’ Turkey, especially ahead of 30 March local elections."
The tomb of Suleyman Shah in Aleppo is currently under threat due to the rise in fighting between the Syrian opposition and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, in the area.
Protected by Turkish troops, the tomb - Turkey's only exclave - and the surrounding area are located in Aleppo's Manbij district, approximately 30km from the Turkish border.
- YouTube access
On Turkey's blocking access to YouTube, Davutoglu said the move came after the leak.
The Turkish foreign ministry had earlier called for the restriction of access to some content on the website due to leaked recording.
"States have the right to take such measures everywhere in the world. We are asking for the kind of respect that any other country would be shown if they faced the same situation,” Davutoglu said.
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