Egyptian lawmakers Monday urged Cairo to grant political asylum to US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen accused of plotting the failed military coup against Turkish President Erdogan, in a move that would further strain relations between the two countries, reports say.
Egypt has refused to condemn the failed military coup which occurred July 15 as diplomatic feud between the two countries plays out.
Egyptian lawmaker Emad Mahrous reportedly called on al-Sisi’s cabinet to grant Gulen asylum in Egypt as Turkish authorities called on Washington to extradite the Turkish preacher.
“[Turkish President Recep Tayyip] Erdogan is giving shelter to hundreds of leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist organisation and members of other bloody militant Islamist groups, which attack Egypt day and night,” Mahrous added.
“This was a moderate Muslim country that has become an Islamist dictatorship at the hands of Erdogan and his Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated political party.”
In another step to irk Ankara, parliamentarian Mustafa Bakri this week gathered 336 signatures from other members of parliament calling for a resolution recognizing the mass killings of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire as genocide, Qatari London-based “The New Arab” reports.
Diplomatic ties between Egypt and Turkey turned sour following President al-Sisi’s military coup against Mohamed Morsi in 2013.
Ankara, Morsi’s staunch ally, cut ties with Cairo. Turkish President Erdogan has repeatedly refused to thaw ties with al-Sisi.
Ankara has given shelter to several figures of the Muslim Brotherhood who ran from al-Sisi’s crackdown on the organization.