AKP wants to bring back laws of coup era, says Turkey’s main opposition leader
AA PhotoThe government is bidding to bring back the laws of Turkey’s dark years after the Sept. 12, 1980 military coup with a new security code draft, which will be discussed at parliament this week, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has claimed.
“They want to bring back the Sept. 12 coup era laws. There has been a gap [since then] and they want to fill that gap,” Kılıçdaroğlu said during his weekly address to his party deputies at parliament on Feb. 3.
He said that with the new code, a person wounded during a protest would be sentenced to one year in jail, which might be converted into a fine, while slingshot users will face two years in jail and those who attend protests wearing a “puşi,” a local unisex scarf, face four years.
“This is their justice. I address my 76 million citizens now: If you say this is justice, then vote [for the ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP],” Kılıçdaroğlu said, adding that the controversial new package would “shackle the people.”
He said the package targeted young protesters who were out on the streets during the summer of 2013 as part of the Gezi Park protests.
“Why are they using a puşi or other such things to cover their faces? To avoid tear gas. Now [the government] says the new law is coming to prevent this. But whatever you bring in, I will be leading those young people,” the CHP leader said, questioning whether the new package was really meant to “maintain public order.”
Also criticizing the government and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan over plans to shift from a parliamentary system to a presidential system, Kılıçdaroğlu said Erdoğan had already taken over the tasks of the executive power, namely those of the prime minister and the cabinet.
“Whatever they do, the presidential system will not come as long as the CHP stands here. Everyone should forget about it [the presidential system],” he said.
The CHP has repeatedly argued that the presidential system was in line with Erdoğan’s demands and would bring about a “dictatorship” in Turkey.