I will meet prime minister if he wants, says CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu

I will meet prime minister if he wants, says CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu

Şükrü Küçükşahin ANKARA
I will meet prime minister if he wants, says CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu Turkey’s main opposition leader has welcomed Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu’s remarks on the levels of polarization in the country, saying he will meet with Davutoğlu if necessary in the future.

“The prime minister is right that I did not call him to congratulate him, I respect his criticism on that,” Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu told Hürriyet yesterday. “As you know, we had a congress at that time and things were very busy. But if a request comes from the prime minister to meet about a problem of the country, or if his ministers feel the need to inform us, we will always do what is necessary.”

Kılıçdaroğlu said he welcomed Davutoğlu’s remarks that social and political polarization is a problem that should be addressed, but argued that the side to blame was the ruling party.

“The first thing he did after becoming prime minister was to criticize the CHP, I believe he forgets what he said very quickly. Still, beyond all this, if they want courtesy in politics, then I welcome this,” said the CHP leader.

“However, the prime minister says we are responsible for the polarization, when the whole world knows that Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been using polarization as a method to consolidate his electorate. Doesn’t Davutoğlu know that?” Kılıçdaroğlu added.

He said Davutoğlu’s remarks that he will aim not to have a polarizing political stance were important, but “time will tell whether he will be able to live up to his words.”

Kılıçdaroğlu also said it was the CHP’s duty as a main opposition party to voice the mistakes of the government, and this should not be considered as polarizing the country.

“We will continue our criticism. We cannot ignore corruption, we cannot keep silent if 301 workers in Soma are sent to their deaths, if tens of workers fall victim to the wild capitalism every day. If some say that such criticism is polarizing, that is not right. The government should lend an ear to such criticism,” he said.

The CHP leader also added that his party would show respect to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan “as long as he respects the laws and stays committed to the Constitution.”

“We did not attend the oath-taking ceremony because laws were broken,” said Kılıçdaroğlu. “It should not be forgotten that there were serious accusations of corruption regarding him and his family before he was elected the president. We will keep our relations at a distance until he is cleared of those accusations. The presidency is a post suitable for people who do not carry any single stain on their name,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.