BDP says it is investigating source of İmrali leak

BDP says it is investigating source of İmrali leak

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
BDP says it is investigating source of İmrali leak

'Claims about the leak are not true,’ says BDP co-chair Demirtaş. DHA Photo

The Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) has promised to probe the source behind a leak of the content of talks with outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan, while both the party and the government have expressed their commitment to the continuation of efforts to end the terror problem.

Facing accusations that it is responsible for the leaks, the BDP defended itself on March 1 and rejected claims that the controversial document was handed to daily Milliyet by party officials.

BDP co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş said the BDP was investigating how these documents could be published in a newspaper, promising to disclose results if they could find out the source.

“To make it clear; although we have many criticisms about the prime minister and we have concerns and suggestions about this process, everybody should be assured that we will never be involved in a conspiracy against the prime minister, who said he was ready to drink hemlock poison [for a solution],” Demirtaş told reporters in northern Iraq.

The BDP co-chair was there chairing a BDP delegation paying visits to prominent Iraqi Kurdish politicians in order to inform them about developments regarding the peace process.

Demirtaş’s remarks were on the leak of the record of talks between Öcalan, the imprisoned leader of the PKK, and three lawmakers from the BDP will not derail the peace process launched by the government.

Öcalan allegedly threatened that if the government did not solve the problem it would lead to a massive civil war against 50,000 armed militants, according to leaked documents. Underlining that they could make an alliance with the government over current Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s presidential proposal, Öcalan implied that this would be the last peace initiative in which he would take part. His overall statements have been interpreted to indicate that there is already a peace deal between Öcalan and the government with many aspects that could disturb the Turkish people.

Government circles have described the leak as a clear attempt to sabotage the efforts, but have also reiterated their full support and commitment to a breakthrough in the nearly four-decade old problem.

Reports in the Turkish media claimed that the documents could have been leaked to the press by radical names within the BDP who oppose the ongoing process. The BDP co-leader said the content of the document was generally accurate, with minor differences.

“Claims about the leak are not true. We could never have such an approach. It’s impossible for us to conspire against a developing process,” Demirtaş said.

The government agreed to continue with the process. “The faith of our people for a solution and its instruction to the politicians for the realization of this solution is there. We will continue on our path within the framework of the instructions we have received from the people. The solution will not be against the people’s [interests],” Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ told reporters March 1. “We are doing everything in front of the eyes of the people, and we will continue to do so with our people.”

‘Saboteurs at work’

In a column published in daily Star, Erdoğan’s main adviser, Yalçın Akdoğan, described the act as “saboteurs at work.” “There are great differences between the documents provided by Öcalan to the state and the records published in the press. To clear the situation, those documents given by Öcalan have not been approved by the state either. It’s very wrong to introduce a document as if it were the whole content of the peace process. This is open sabotage,” Akdoğan wrote.

There was no reaction from Erdoğan, but his earlier statements had targeted BDP officials who were “talking too much about the process.” “If you’re paying attention, you see that I don’t talk much about it,” Erdoğan said.