Czech Television reports that the Turkish Foreign Ministry on Thursday, strongly condemned President Milos Zeman’s statement that Turkey was an ally of global terror group, the Islamic State. Zeman made the claim earlier this week, while on tour in the Karlovy Vary region.

The Foreign Ministry called Zeman’s claim false and hurtful and added that Turkey contributed to European security and was home to the largest number of refugees in the world. Zeman said that he stood by his claim, in response.