Erdoğan Blasts Europe’s Silence On Bangladesh Leader’s Execution

Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses his party members at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey, Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011. Erdogan said for the first time that Syria's president must step down over the country's brutal crackdown on dissent, ratcheting up the pressure on the increasingly isolated Bashar Assad. In his harshest words yet, Ergodan reminded Assad of the bloody end of the Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, as well as past dictators, including Adolf Hitler.(ddp images/AP Photo)Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sunday lashed out at Europe’s silence over the execution of a veteran Islamist leader in Bangladesh, accusing the West of “double standards.”

“If you are against political executions, why did you remain silent to the execution of Motiur Rahman Nizami who was martyred a couple of days ago,” Erdoğan said in a televised speech in Istanbul.

“Have you heard anything from Europe? … No. Isn’t it called double standards?” Erdoğan said.

Nizami, leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami party, was hanged at a Dhaka jail late Tuesday for the massacre of intellectuals during the 1971 independence war with Pakistan.

The 73-year-old former government minister was the fifth and the most senior opposition figure executed since the secular government in the overwhelmingly Muslim nation set up a controversial war crimes tribunal in 2010.

In protest, Turkey on Thursday recalled its ambassador to Bangladesh for consultations.

Since coming to power in 2002, Turkey’s ruling Islamic-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP) has sought to boost the country’s power in the Muslim world.

Last year, Erdoğan condemned a death sentence handed to Egypt’s deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, who was a close ally of Ankara until he was overthrown by the military in 2013.

At the time he condemned the West for turning a blind eye to the “coup” by army chief army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi who is now president.

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