‘Bismillah’ campaign song debate heats up between AKP, opposition
AA PhotoJustice and Development Party (AKP) Deputy Chairman Bekir Bozdağ has said his party will object the Supreme Election Board (YSK) decision to ban the use of “Bismillah” (in the name of God) in the AKP’s campaign jingle for the upcoming snap election.
“Saying ‘bismillah’ is not using religion for politics, as every Muslim in our country starts working by saying it. Can you even forbid any politician from using ‘bismillah’?” Bozdağ told reporters late on Sept. 24.
The issue also arose during the exchange of Eid al-Ahda greetings on Sept. 25 between the Republican People’s Party (CHP), which had applied to the YSK for the ban, and the AKP.
CHP deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu reacted against AKP deputy Ahmet Gündoğdu when the latter said the CHP “protested the use of ‘bismillah.’”
“The ‘bismillah’ is sacred,” Tanrıkulu said, accusing the AKP of abusing a value shared by the whole country for party interests.
He also claimed that the AKP deliberately used the phrase despite knowing the YSK would ban it, as the party again wanted to portray itself as a victim.