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Turkey's Erdogan Keeps Whaling on Macron, Warns US

Erdogan also takes aim at US for warnings on Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 26, 2020 8:31 AM CDT

(Newser) – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan challenged the US to impose sanctions against his country while also launching a second personal attack Sunday on French President Emmanuel Macron, who has been a vocal critic of Turkish foreign policy in recent months. "The person in charge of France has lost his way," Erdogan told a televised ruling party congress in the eastern city of Malatya, per the AP. "He goes on about Erdogan while in bed and while awake. Look at yourself first and where you're going. I said yesterday ... he is a case and he really must be examined." Erdogan was referring to remarks he'd made on Saturday, when he took aim at Macron's mental health. "What is Macron's problem with Islam?" Erdogan said at a meeting of his Justice and Development Party in Kayseri, per CNN. "Macron needs some sort of mental treatment."

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"What else is there to say about a head of state who doesn't believe in the freedom of religion and behaves this way against the millions of people of different faiths living in his own country?" Erdogan added about Macron, who has vowed to crack down on radical Islam after a teacher was beheaded there earlier this month. Erdogan also took aim at foreign critics Sunday. "Whatever your sanctions are, don't be late," Erdogan said, referring to US warnings for Turkey not to get directly involved in the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, where Ankara supports Azerbaijan against ethnic Armenian forces. The Turkish leader also mentioned Washington's threat of sanctions after Turkey tested the Russian-made S-400 air defense system. The purchase has already seen Turkey kicked off the F-35 stealth fighter program. "We stepped in for the F-35, you threatened us," Erdogan said. "You said, 'Send the S-400s back to Russia.' We are not a tribal state. We are Turkey."

(Read more Turkey stories.)

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