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Knicks’ Kanter will not travel to London due to safety fears

New York Knicks center Enes Kanter

Enes Kanter will not travel to London with the New York Knicks later this month due to fears for his life.

Powerful center Kanter, a Turkish native, has been an outspoken critic of the country’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

As a consequence, he claims he will not feel safe heading to the English capital with the rest of his team-mates for the NBA clash against the Washington Wizards at the O2 on January 17.

“Sadly, I’m not going because of that freaking lunatic, the Turkish president,” Kanter told reporters, as quoted by ESPN.

“There’s a chance that I can get killed out there. So that’s why I talked to the (Knicks) front office. I’m not going.

“It’s pretty sad that just all this stuff affects my career and basketball, because I want to be out there helping my team win.

“But just because of that one lunatic guy, one maniac or dictator, I can’t even go out there and just do my job. So it’s pretty sad.”

Asked if he had genuine fears for his life, the 26-year-old added: “Oh yeah, easy.

“They’ve got a lot of spies there. I can get killed very easy. That will be a very ugly situation.”

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