Greece’s government spokesman on Monday reacted to a report published by a Turkish magazine last week which described Istanbul-based Patriarch Vartholomaios as an “associate” of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen.
The allegation was contained in a special 176-page report published in the pro-Islamic “Gercek Hayat” (Real Life) magazine. The article accused several religious minority leaders in Turkey, as well as Turkish politicians and business people, of having links to Gulen’s network.
Asked by journalists about the report, Petsas said, “One cannot use figures such as the Patriarch [for their own ends].” He added that the Greek government does not comment on Turkey’s domestic issues.
Ankara accuses Gulen, who has lived in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania since 1999, of masterminding the failed putsch against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016 and has carried out an extensive crackdown on his alleged supporters.