Erdogan anti-Israel slur video
Text size
AP
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressing his supporters at the parliament in Ankara, April 29, 2014. Photo by AP

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan called out an anti-Israel slur when surrounded by protesters at the site of the mine blast that killed hundreds, local media has reported.
 

In a video circulated by opposition newspaper Sozcu, Erdogan says, "Why are you running away, Israeli spawn," using a word in Turkish that is considered a curse.

 

The incident occurred when Erdogan visited the Soma in western Turkey on Wednesday, where the accident took place. At least 282 people died, and a number of miners are still missing. Erdogan has been the subject of much criticism after the tragedy, and his government is seen as having failed to prevent what is the worst industrial accident in Turkey's history.


In the footage, which AFP said could not be verified, shouting and whistling protesters surround the premier. 


According to some local media, Erdogan struck the protester, but this is not clear in the video. The deputy chairman of Erdogan's AKP party, Hussain Celik, has denied the allegation.


Earlier, a photo from the incident showed one of Erdogan's aides, Yusuf Yerkel, kicking a protester. Yerkel is a deputy chief of staff at Erdogan's office and adviser to the prime minister. He later said he was "sorry."