ANKARA, Turkey – The intense reaction of the Turkish opposition parties has been triggered by the information that the Turkish Chief of Staff, General Chulousi Akar, and the Turkish Presidency’s spokesman, Ibrahim Kalin, visited former President Abdullah Gul to persuade him not to nominated for the highest state office in the upcoming early elections, underlining that this visit “is equivalent to Turkey’s military intervention in political affairs”, Turkish daily newspaper Hurriyet wrote yesterday.
“It is clearly a coup d’état, for an effort to design political developments from the hands of the army. With this visit, the political coup of 20 July wore a (military) uniform, “said the representative of the main opposition, the People’s Republican People’s Party (CHP), Bulent Tezjan, during a press conference yesterday, Hurriyet said.
With this comment, Tezjan referred to the CHP leader, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, against the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), that he undermined, as he stressed, the power of the Turkish National Assembly. For Kilicdaraglu, the ruling party had committed a “political coup” on July 20, 2016, when it declared a state of emergency situation, as the opposition Turkish newspaper recalls in the first issue of its English-language version.
The response of the CHP spokesman followed the rumors that General Akbar and Caline had visited former President and former Prime Minister Gul to persuade him not to come to the presidential election.
Gul, a founding member of the AKP, was one of the names very often heard in talks about potential opposition candidates in the presidential election, especially after he made an appearance alongside the leader of the Party of Happiness, Temel Karamolaoglou, April 22nd.
The visit of Akar and Kalin to Gul was revealed by a Turkish news television network via the Internet. But the text was deleted on April 26th. The columnist, Hurriyet’s Deniz Zeyrek, spoke humbly about the visit in question on 27 April, not mentioning names.
Gul gave a press conference on April 28th to announce that he would not be a candidate in the presidential election. He did not comment on the rumors.
For Tezjan of CHP, these rumors have not been confirmed, nor have they been denied, nor have they been covered by the Turkish media “as they should”.
“This is a situation that requires an explanation. We are not going through a period of time that would mean that this was a courtesy visit. It is clearly about an attempt by a new military commander,” the spokesman of the main opposition complained.
Good Party: “The army can not be instrumental”
Meanwhile, Ayut Chirai, a senior member of the Good Party (İYİ), also referred to the reputed visit.
“It equals intervention in elections and the political system and is a threat to the presidential and parliamentary elections of June 24,” a Good Party statement released on Monday said.
“We condemn the intervention in Gul’s possible candidacy and any parties could support him as an intervention in the democratic process,” he added. “The purpose of this visit was to” intimidate all the other parties that will participate in the elections, but underlined that’ at this time, nothing remains secret.”
The Good Party also criticized the AKP ruling party for attempting to intervene and shape the political stuff by “gearing up” the Turkish army.
“No one can abuse the Turkish army on the grounds that everything is legitimate to remain in power,” the opposition party’s announcement concluded.
Translated from Crash Magazine Online.