The hardline president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, declared that the West doesn’t like Muslims and wants to see them dead in a Thursday address in Istanbul.
“Believe me, they don’t like us,” Erdogan stated at a meeting of the Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (COMCEC), Agence France-Presse reports. “They look like friends, but they want us dead, they like seeing our children die. How long will we stand that fact?”
The Turkish president, who’s a noted Muslim fundamentalist and Western critic, further claimed the West and “foreigners” in general only want to exploit the Muslim world for its resources and intentionally spread conflict in the region.
“Only we can solve our problems. I speak openly; foreigners love oil, gold, diamonds, and the cheap labor force of the Islamic world. They like the conflicts, fights and quarrels of the Middle East,” Erdogan said.
He also attacked Western media for mocking his assertion that Muslims discovered the Americas before Christopher Columbus.
“Just because I repeated a fact based on scientific research, I have been targeted by the Western media, as well as the foreigners within who suffer from an ego complex,” Erdogan continued.
Erdogan claimed in early November that Muslims discovered the New World in the 12th century, long before 1492. This quickly prompted derision from several media outlets, both Western and Turkish.
The main purpose of Erdogan’s address was to call for unity among Muslim countries to resolve pressing issues, such as the ongoing civil war in Syria, which he believes can not be solved by international bodies like the United Nations.
Turkey also recently made news in the U.S. after three Navy sailors were attacked by a gang of Turkish nationalists who demanded America leave their country immediately.