Former Chief of Gen. Staff, Büyükanıt testifies in coup commission

Former Chief of Gen. Staff, Büyükanıt testifies in coup commission

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Former Chief of Gen. Staff, Büyükanıt testifies in coup commission

DHA Photo

Former Chief of General Staff, retired General Yaşar Büyükanıt, testified today at Parliament's Coup and Memorandum Investigation Commission, about the "e-memorandum" issued by the Turkish Army on April 27, 2007 which lead to a major political crisis before that year's presidential elections.

One of the members of the commission, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) Istanbul deputy Atilla Kaya, said he was not satisfied with Büyükanıt's testimony.

"He said the memorandum was only a declaration and had nothing to so with the presidential elections. When we asked him what his aims were in penning such a declaration, he said it was not possible to manage [the process] by publishing a declaration," Kaya told reporters.

Kaya also said Buyukanit did not seem regretful, and defended the memorandum by saying it was an action to emphasize the army's secular stance.

When Kaya was asked if Büyükanıt saw the e-memorandum as an attempt against democracy, he said Büyükanıt had told them that the prime minister did not consider it to be so.

Before the testimony, Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Istanbul deputy Sırrı Süreyya Önder had said Büyükanıt would be asked about his meeting with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, which Erdoğan said should be kept secret by both sides "until the apocalypse."

Önder also said he was going to ask about the operations in the Kandil Mountains at the time, the aim of which was speculated as being to "provide financial profit to generals in their retirement by paying war compensations."

The meeting, chaired by the commission chairwoman, Nimet Baş, was held early on Thursday at the historic Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul's Beşiktaş district.

The commission also discussed inviting Prime Minister Erdoğan next week, which may happen on Monday or Tuesday.