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'If We Kill Civilians, We Should Start With Traitors': Turkish Host Sparks Fury

© Sputnik / Mikhail Alayeddin / Go to the photo bankJenderes village in Afrin Canton in the north of Syria after aircraft and artillery shelling by the Turkish Armed Forces
Jenderes village in Afrin Canton in the north of Syria after aircraft and artillery shelling by the Turkish Armed Forces - Sputnik International
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The journalist has already been fired, while police are launching an investigation into the matter. The anchor worked on one of Turkey’s pro-government TV channels.

"If we were going to kill civilians then we would start with Cihangir, Nisantasi and Etiler, there are plenty of traitors there. And there's also the Turkish parliament," TV anchor Ahmet Keser said.

The comment by Akit TV anchor Ahmet Keser, which was dismissive of the allegations of civilian casualties in Afrin, infuriated not only opposition critics, but even ruling party officials. As the journalist was rejecting the accusations, he pointed out that if the country was going to kill civilians, it would start with secular neighborhoods of Istanbul, where "plenty of traitors" live.

READ MORE: Turkey Slams US for Distorting UN Resolution on Syria

Cihangir, Nisantasi and Etiler are three neighborhoods of Istanbul inhabited mostly by secular people who prefer a European lifestyle.

The spokesman of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Mahir Unal slammed the comment as unacceptable and inexplicable and criticized the anchor for trying to divide the country. According to him, the police have launched an investigation into what Mahir Unal called "bald provocation."

READ MORE: Turkish PM Confirms Cutting Off Kurdish YPG Militia From Border With Syria

Akit TV officials have already stated that Ahmet Keser's words were not approved by the media and that he has already left his position.

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