Chief of the General Staff Hulusi Akar, addressing the Halifax International Security Forum held in Canada, said with reference to the hostility towards Atatürk and Erdoğan at the NATO exercise, “At one of the military exercises that NATO recently organised, from what has been said, an ugly and unacceptable incident took place in an isolated manner and perhaps carried out by people supported by FETO.” Army General Akar, noting that NATO had been the most successful and effective military organisation in history, continued as follows:
"NATO administrators responded timely and appropriately. We should not allow anyone to undermine our alliance and our solidarity,"
Akar, emphasising that Turkey protected NATO’s Eastern and South-Eastern flank, stressed that Turkey was one of the countries in NATO with the most soldiers and Turkey supported the fourteen NATO missions in eleven different countries.
Army General Akar, voicing the satisfaction he felt at attending the forum, said that change had been observed with the appearance of new actors throughout the world over the past 25 years.
Army General Akar, emphasising that the security environment had changed following the Cold War and there was a need for strong leadership to tackle the emerging problems and changes, commented, “At this point, I must say that the use of terrorist organisations against other terrorist organisations or in proxy wars has taken us towards a dangerous practice.”
Akar, saying that regimes in the Middle East were undergoing rapid change, stated, “The YPG, PYD and PKK are mutually identical organisations and particular attention must be paid to them. They are recognised as terrorist organisations by various countries and international organisations.”