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Turkey Warns West Over Alleged Coup Supporters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin attend a press conference during their meting in St. Petersburg on August 9.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other Turkish officials have given harsh warnings to the United States and the European Union, saying they are making grave mistakes in their response to last month's failed coup.

Thousands of people, waving Turkish flags, gathered outside the presidential palace in Ankara on August 10 to hear Erdogan call anew for the United States to extradite Fethullah Gulen, а self-exiled Muslim cleric whom he accuses of orchestrating the coup attempt.

Gulen denies any involvement.

"Sooner or later the United States of America will make a choice. Either Turkey or [Gulen]," he told the crowd.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, meanwhile, told the state-run Anadolu Agency that the EU was making serious mistakes in its criticism of Turkish policies.

The rhetoric comes just a day after Erdogan staged a high-profile visit to Moscow to mend fences with Russia's President Vladimir Putin.

Many observers speculated that in addition to getting Moscow to lift damaging economic sanctions, Erdogan was sending a message to the West, to gain leverage and mute criticism of his domestic policies.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP