EP rapporteur's remarks about PKK and branches not being 'a threat' unacceptable, Turkish MFA says

EP rapporteur's remarks about PKK and branches not being 'a threat' unacceptable, Turkish MFA says

The Turkish Foreign Ministry blasted Monday recent remarks by the European Parliament's Turkey Rapporteur Kati Piri downplaying the threat of the PKK terrorist group as "unacceptable."

"It is unacceptable that a person -- who does not see that one of the terror organizations posing the biggest threat to Turkey as an [actual] 'threat' -- is a Turkey rapporteur," said Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hami Aksoy in a written statement.

In an interview with a news portal published on Saturday, Piri said: "For us, the PKK and its variations are not a threat. There are no attacks by the PKK in the Netherlands, Belgium or France."

She added: "For us, when it comes to Syria, apart from the humanitarian catastrophe, the real threat is ISIS," using an alternate name for the Daesh terrorist group.

"It is regrettable that a person -- who could not understand the importance of resolute cooperation against terror organizations- works as an EU Parliament rapporteur," Aksoy said.

Her remarks also cast a shadow over the reputation of the European Parliament, he added.

On Monday, Piri wrote on Twitter that her remarks were taken out of context.

But Aksoy called her defense "inadequate."

"It is a late effort as they were written in response to our reaction," he added.

The PKK -- recognized as a terrorist group by the EU, U.S., and Turkey -- has waged a three-decade war against Turkey, taking 40,000 lives in the process. The Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing the People's Protection Units (YPG) are the Syrian branches of the PKK.

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