CHP head laments the use of the Quran as an instrument for politics
Deniz Zeyrek – ANKARA / İZMİR
AA PhotoTurkey’s main opposition leader has said the use of the Quran as an instrument for political purposes was an injustice to the religion of Islam itself, while also expressing deep sorrow over President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s charges against him and his party due to their alleged religious indifference.
“I’ve been very saddened. The use of people’s spiritual values and the Quran, which is holy book for billions of people, as an instrument for scoring political goals has deeply hurt me,” said Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the main opposition, social democratic Republican People’s Party (CHP).
“It [Quran] is not a book which belongs to one person. We call it ‘The Kalam of Allah.’ Interpreting it as his own property and as a book which nobody, except him, understands is an injustice to Islam,” Kılıçdaroğlu said on May 5 while speaking with a group of journalists on board a plane en route from Ankara to İzmir where he held a campaign rally for the June 7 parliamentary election.
In his last few public addresses, Erdoğan accused both the CHP and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) of “religious indifference.”
“The person who heads the main opposition party yesterday used a phrase about me while in Kayseri. He is not worth responding to, but all of my citizens from Siirt to Kayseri know their president very well,” Erdoğan said on May 4, delivering a speech in Siirt on the occasion of a collective inauguration of public facilities.
Erdoğan recalled that Kılıçdaroğlu suggested he was “exploiting the Quran like Evren did,” referring to Kenan Evren, the leader of the military coup d’état in 1980 and a former president.
“Mr. Kılıçdaroğlu, I have grown up with the Quran and I live with the Quran,” the president said, holding a copy of the Quran in his hand and showing it to the crowd.
“What place the Quran has in your life is obvious,” he added, apparently addressing Kılıçdaroğlu.
According to the main opposition leader, the ruling party is losing support.
“Now, they want to use religion in politics. I promise everybody that nobody will interfere with anybody’s faith when the CHP comes to power,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.