AKP says police ‘might have briefed Embassy’

AKP says police ‘might have briefed Embassy’

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
AKP says police ‘might have briefed Embassy’

Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputy chairman Hüseyin Çelik speaks during a press conference in Ankara. AA photo

A ruling party official conceded yesterday that police might have briefed the U.S. embassy about the Ergenekon probe, not upon government instruction but “on their own initiative.”

“Some police officials might have individually briefed the U.S. embassy on their own initiative. Neither the Interior Ministry nor the General Directorate of Security gave instruction for a briefing,” Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputy chairman Hüseyin Çelik told reporters.

The controversy has been lingering since last week, when it emerged that U.S. cables published on the whistle-blowing WikiLeaks web site, reported briefings by Turkish police on the Ergenekon investigation on at least two occasions in 2008 and in 2009. The police denied the briefing.

However, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Metin Lütfü Baydar yesterday underlined at a press conference that the name of the policeman who held the second briefing was available in a cable dated June 2, 2009. The dispatch said the briefing was given by “members of the Turkish National Police Counterterrorism and Intelligence Branches, headed by the Director of International Relations and Analysis Section, Ufuk Ersoy Yavuz,” he said. U.S. officials refuse to comment on issues concerning cables revealed by WikiLeaks.

Meanwhile, the CHP’s Atilla Kart reffered to allegations stemming from earlier cables. “The allegations over Prime Minister Erdoğan’s bank accounts in Switzerland have not been explained yet,” he said.