CHP leader slams government over intel failure after fatal raids
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
The AKP government has brought Turkey to the point of surrendering to fear, CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu says after rising deadly attacks by the outlawed PKK militants. DAILY NEWS photoMain opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has slammed the government for the perceived intelligence failures in the recent deadly attack by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in the southeastern province of Şırnak.
“So they were saying that everything was under the control of the security forces and that intelligence was very well provided. Don’t we call the government to account? They brought Turkey to the point of surrendering to fear. If you move away from democracy and head for an authoritarian regime, this will be the result,” Kılıçdaroğlu told daily Hürriyet, in a report printed yesterday.
Some 10 Turkish soldiers were killed and seven were injured on Monday night when PKK militants launched numerous attacks on military bases around Şırnak’s Beytüşşebap district, prompting repeated accusations from Kılıçdaroğlu of intelligence failures. He also touched on the issue on Tuesday in Sivas, where he was holding the CHP’s Central Executive Board Meeting, on the 93th anniversary of the historic Sivas congress.
Response from EU minister
“I want all citizens to consider again, regardless of which party they voted for. There was no terror in Turkey in 2002, but the PKK aims to create a space for itself in 2012. Dozens of martyr funerals are coming. Everybody is mourning. Why have we come this point? Who has brought us to this point?” Kılıçdaroğlu said, accusing the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) of being incapable of governing the country.
In response to Kılıçdaroğlu, European Union Affairs Minister Egemen Bağış, has expressed his disappointment with the CHP leader’s remarks.
“Questioning the situation of intelligence does not befit Turkey’s main opposition leader. We are passing through such an important process, in which our unity and solidarity should be stronger than ever,” Bağış said ahead of receiving Gaziantep Mayor Asım Güzelbey.
“We have grief today, we feel pain at the bottom of our hearts. It’s very saddening that the main opposition party is attempting to make politics over martyr funerals, when we have to ease our pain altogether,” he added.
Kılıçdaroğlu previously hinted at intelligence failures for the terror attacks in Southeastern Anatolia. Speaking in a televised interview on Aug. 27, Kılıçdaroğlu said the bombing attack that killed civilians, including children, in Gaziantep, on Aug. 22, had occurred after Nationalist Intelligence Organization (MİT) officials in Gaziantep had been appointed to the other places.
“A short while before this incident, two senior bureaucrats were appointed [to other places]. Let’s ask why. Where did the region’s MİT official go?” Kılıçdaroğlu said at the time. The MİT officials later denied the allegations and said that the MİT Gaziantep unity superior’s position change was a routine practice, in contrast to what Kılıçdaroğlu implied.