Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday rejected the NATO apology after his name appeared on an “enemy poster” at the alliance’s drills in Norway.
“You have seen disrespectful behavior at the NATO drill yesterday. There are some mistakes that are done not by fools but only by base people,” Erdogan said in a speech on television.
“This matter cannot be covered over with a simple apology,” he added.
The incident occurred earlier this week, after the names of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan as well as the late Turkish leader Mustafa Kemal Ataturk were included in an enemy list on a poster at the drills.
Following the incident, Erdogan announced that he had ordered 40 Turkish troops to be removed from the exercise, saying that he saw such an act as offensive.
While media reports have suggested that a technician and an officer, responsible for the incident were fired, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg refuted this saying that the responsible individual was not an employee of NATO.
Turkey, which is a key NATO partner, joined the bloc in 1952, three years after the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty.