ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey’s foreign minister on Friday accused US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of “blatant ignorance” over her comments that questioned U.S. President Donald Trump’s commitment to democracy and his alleged “admiration” of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other leaders accused of authoritarian rule.
Pelosi criticized Trump’s refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses elections in November, and called on the U.S. president to honor his oath of office and the U.S. Constitution.
“We do know who he admires. He admires (Russian President Vladimir) Putin, he admires Kim Jong Un, he admires Erdogan in Turkey,” Pelosi said.
She added: “But I remind him, you are not in North Korea, you are not in Turkey, you are not in Russia, Mr. President.”
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu took to Twitter to admonish Pelosi over her remarks.
”(Pelosi’s) rise to become Speaker of the House is what is truly worrisome for American democracy, given her blatant ignorance,” Cavusoglu wrote. “You will learn to respect the Turkish people’s will.”
Trump has been fanning uncertainty as he floats theories the election may be “rigged” if he loses, echoing warnings he made ahead of the 2016 voting — even though past elections have not shown substantial evidence of fraud from mail-in voting.
Despite troubled relations between Turkey and the United States over a series of issues, Trump has frequently praised Erdogan and their bond has helped to keep ties between the NATO allies afloat.