Erdoğan is Everest, but standing on Himalayas: PM’s advisor
'Firefighters do not need to start fires to show that they are important,' says Hüseyin Çelik in his criticism against Erdoğan. Hürriyet photoTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has broken a self-implemented code by discussing party issues on behalf of the media in a recent row between a deputy prime minister and the Ankara Mayor, according to the ruling Justice of Development Party (AKP) leader’s chief advisor Hüseyin Çelik, who picked a mountain allegory to define Erdoğan.
“The highest spot on earth is the Everest. But it owes its existence and stance to the Himalayas,“ Çelik said in a rare criticism against Erdoğan from the AKP during an interview on broadcaster CNN Türk late on March 27.
“Erdoğan’s stance within the party is like Everest but he is standing on Himalayas,” he said likening the party to the mountain range.
Erdoğan had advised his former fellow party seniors not to discuss internal issues on the media and party had obeyed the code strictly, but the president now broke it during the row between Deputy PM Bülent Arınç and Ankara Mayor Melih Gökçek, said Çelik, who has been a major party figure and had served as a cabinet minister.
“In the recent incident, the president was the one to initiate the issue in front of the media,” he said.
Responding to a question on whether Erdoğan’s stance was a move to display that a presidential system is needed, Çelik said: “Firefighters do not need to start fires to show that they are important.”
Gökçek had earlier accused Arınç of “serving” the Gülen movement, following the deputy prime minister’s criticism of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s interventions into government affairs, which some suggest has tarnished the government’s credibility ahead of the parliamentary elections in June.
“Arınç can no longer be the spokesperson of the party. He cannot represent us. What Arınç must do from now on is first resign as spokesperson, and then resign from his seat in the government,” Gökçek had said via his Twitter account on March 23.
Responding to the Ankara mayor, Arınç said Gökçek had “sat in the lap” of the Gülen movement and had “sold Ankara to this structure plot by plot.”
Arınç continued his criticism on March 27, despite the PM’s statement that announced the end of the war of words.