Photographs posted by the Turkish Embassy in London show that Qurban Hussain, a British Member of the House of Lords, participated in a discussion about the 2016 failed coup attempt organized by the British Turkish Association (BTA). Other attendees included two prominent members of the AKP party and the Turkish ambassador to Great Britain. A post by the Embassy states:
July 15, 2021 Ambassador Yalçın attended the panel organized by the British-Turkish Association in Luton and informed the participants about the July 15 coup attempt and our country’s struggle with FETÖ.
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The Turkish government refers to the Gülen Movement as the “Fethullahist Terrorist Organisation (FETÖ).” Fethullah Gülen, the leader of the Gülen movement, lives in self-exile in the United States near Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania. The Turkish government accuses him of planning the unsuccessful coup attempt in July 2016. Gülen was previously one of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s political allies and has millions of followers in his movement.
The photographs and an event notice indicate the discussion was attended by Osman Aşkın Bak, former Minister of Youth and Sports, and Zafer Sirakaya, AK Party Vice President of Foreign Relations. Sirakaya co-founded the Union of International Democrats (UID; formerly known as the Union of European Turkish Democrats) in 2004 and served as its president from 2016 to 2018. German media has described the UID as a lobbying group for President Erdoğan and his AKP and which emphasizes Turkish values and customs.
The British Turkish Association (BTA) describes itself as an umbrella organization established by more than 20 local Turkish community organizations. The BTA regularly advertises and co-hosts events for the Turkish Embassy. In December 2021, representatives of the BTA met with a delegation of The Presidency of Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB). YTB was established in 2010 to coordinate the activities for Turks living abroad. The agency reports to the Turkish Minister of Culture and Tourism.
Qurban Hussain joined the British Liberal Democrat party in 2003 after resigning from the Labour party in protest of their support for the Iraq war.