CHP signals support on mandate deploying Turkish troops to Iraq

CHP signals support on mandate deploying Turkish troops to Iraq

CHP signals support on mandate deploying Turkish troops to Iraq

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The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) hinted at supporting the parliamentary motion of a one-year mandate authorizing the deployment of the Turkish army abroad, “if it will be about counter-terrorism,” while the Kurdish issue-focused People’s Democratic Party (HDP) is against the motion.

“The importance of the mandate [on Turkish deployment abroad] still remains. They [the government] will issue a new motion, we cannot say anything without knowing its content, surely. It is not right to give comments,” CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said on Sept. 21 in a televised interview with private broadcaster HaberTürk TV. 

As the existing motion will be in effect until Oct. 30, Kılıçdaroğlu said the CHP had already supported the previous motion and will continue to do so if the context will be the same.

“We approved the previous motion. It was about a struggle against terror. We support counterterrorism,” he said. 

He added that the main opposition will determine its stance after the National Security Council (MGK) and Council of Ministers meetings, where the government is in a bid to determine measures to be taken on the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), if Massoud Barzani’s government carries out the forthcoming independence referendum on Sept. 25. 

“The MGK will convene and we do not know what kind of decisions will be made in the meeting. We will assess the process. The MGK’s decisions will probably be reflected in the motion. We do not know that either,” he said.

“We all sit and discuss and make up our minds. In the end, we all have a common aim, which [wishes that] Turkey will keep its power and dynamism in the region and the negativity in the region will not affect it. It is our biggest wish,” he added.  

CHP Deputy Group Chair Engin Altay also said on Sept. 22 “if it strengthens the Turkish Armed Forces’ hand in the anti-terror fight,” the CHP will support the motion. 

HDP objects, MHP supports the motion

HDP Spokesperson Osman Baydemir said the Kurdish issue-focused party supports the KRG’s bid to carry out the referendum while strongly objecting the motion to Iraq and Syria. 

“Why would the Kurdish people going to polls be a survival problem for the Turkish Republic? Kurds do not declare war on anyone, nor claim rights on any lands. The result of the referendum is not even known yet and the future decisions that the South Parliament will make is not yet certain,” Baydemir said on Sept. 22. 

As the HDP also objected the previous motions, Baydemir reiterated the party’s position on the deployment of Turkish troops abroad. 

“Those who say ‘yes’ to the motion also say ‘yes’ to the state of emergency rule. Their vote will also amount to saying ‘yes’ to wrong Middle East policies by the AKP [ruling Justice and Development Party] - MHP [opposition Nationalist Movement Party] alliance and to animosity to Kurds,” he said.

MHP Deputy Group Chair Erkan Akçay had already announced that the Nationalist Party will support the motion. 

“We, as the MHP, will attend the extraordinary session on Saturday and support the Iraq motion,” Akçay said on Sept. 21, following AKP Group Deputy Chair Mustafa Elitaş’s call on the session.