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Illegal tape alleges secret PKK talks

ANKARA – Hürriyet Daily News | 9/13/2011 12:00:00 AM |

A voice recording of an alleged meeting between Turkey’s intelligence chief and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, was leaked to some websites Tuesday.

A voice recording of an alleged meeting between Turkey’s intelligence chief and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, was leaked to some websites Tuesday, purportedly depicting him as “negotiating” with senior PKK members.

National Intelligence Organization, or MİT, head Hakan Fidan and his deputy Afet Güneş met with senior PKK members Mustafa Karasu, Sabit Ok and Zübeyr Aydar, with the participation of a representative from a “coordinator country,” probably in Oslo, according to the recording.

The meeting, called the “Oslo talks,” is claimed to be the fifth of its kind, and the first joined by Fidan, and was probably held between mid April and May 2010, following his appointment to MİT.

The recording was first released by pro-PKK news agencies, but had been withdrawn from their websites by late afternoon. The agencies claimed it was planted by anonymous hackers.

“This is a very grave situation,” main opposition Republican People’s Party, or CHP, leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu told the Hürriyet Daily News. “If the head of the intelligence service, whose job is to keep the state’s secrets, is being tapped, it shows the rulers of this country. This is not an ordinary person. This is the chief of the intelligence.”

Kılıçdaroğlu said he did not want to discuss the tape’s content since “it would be to the advantage of those who leak these recordings,” but urged Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to take action against illegal wiretapping.

Muharrem İnce, the CHP’s deputy parliamentary group leader, however, submitted a written question to Parliament asking Erdoğan about the veracity of the recording. “Did this meeting occur upon your instruction? What is the basis of Hakan Fidan’s statement in which he says, ‘I am the special envoy of the prime minister?’” İnce asked.

In response to a question on a CNNTürk program, EU Affairs Minister Egemen Bağış said he was sure the intelligence organization has worked for peace in Turkey but refrained going into detail.

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