‘Do I need to get killed?’ CHP leader blasts
AA photoThe leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has lashed out against prosecutors and law enforcement for releasing four suspects after an intimidating protest staged against him during a funeral for police victims of a June 7 attack in central Istanbul, including a man who threw a bullet at him. “Everybody knows that throwing a bullet is a death threat,” CHP chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu told daily Hürriyet, underlining the saddest aspect of the incident was the suspects’ release by public prosecutors.
“Do I need to get killed for [the suspects] to be arrested?” Kılıçdaroğlu blasted, slamming the prosecutor for not taking responsibility. “At least refer them to a court and let a judge decide,” he added.
The CHP chair also said the attacks were part of a strategy by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government to use to main opposition as a scapegoat in order to gloss over its incompetence in the fight against terror.
“People have started to ask, ‘Why can’t they prevent terror?’ And they [the AKP] started searching for a scapegoat and try to put the blame on the CHP,” he said.
The recent protests targeting him were all staged by AKP supporters, Kılıçdaroğlu stated, supporting his point by explaining that the assailant was seen talking to and hugging Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım.
“If the assailant standing behind the prime minister screamed not at me, but at PM Binali Yıldırım, [if he said] ‘Binali Yıldırım, go out!’ think what would have happened. Why didn’t the police intervene when this happens to us?” he inquired.
Kılıçdaroğlu also claimed the Turkey Veterans Foundation, which put up banners “condemning” the CHP leader as a “PKK [outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party] and DHKP-C [outlawed Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front] lover,” for allegedly visiting militants from the organizations in prison, were also tied to the AKP.
Kılıçdaroğlu also denied the claims and said he would immediately resign if the allegations were proven.
Throwing a bullet is ‘natural:’ AKP deputy
Meanwhile, Bülent Turan, the deputy parliamentary group leader of the AKP, said throwing a bullet was nothing more than a “natural reaction” and a means of “sharing the pain.”
“Everyone’s way and means of reacting is different,” Turan said, describing the act as a “natural reaction, a reflex.”
According to Turan, the man only threw the bullet in his hand to “share his pain,” as his kin had been killed.
Kılıçdaroğlu was among the number of politicians who attended the funeral ceremony held for two police officers, but he was faced with a protest by some attendees.
Following the bullet-throwing incident, the attending CHP delegation was subjected to a brawl, as two men reacted to the group as they were leaving the funeral.
Funeral in Edirne
Following the protests on June 8, Kılıçdaroğlu attended the funeral of a female police officer who was killed in a subsequent terror attack in the Midyat district of southeastern province of Mardin that killed six people, including three police officers.
The funeral ceremony of Nefize Özsoy was held at the Selimiye mosque in the northwestern province of Edirne. Özsoy’s funeral was attended by Edirne Mayor Recep Gürkan, CHP administrators and a contestant for the leadership of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Meral Akşener, in addition to Kılıçdaroğlu.
Scores also flocked to the mosque to bid farewell to Özsoy but quarrels erupted at the end of the ceremony when people started to leave the mosque’s courtyard.
While most reports state the cause of the quarrels remain unknown, Doğan News Agency reported that they erupted after an unknown person shouted at Kılıçdaroğlu, asking when he will “stop supporting terrorism.”