My goal is to die as a martyr, God willing: Turkey’s energy minister

My goal is to die as a martyr, God willing: Turkey’s energy minister

Sevil Erkuş - ANKARA
My goal is to die as a martyr, God willing: Turkey’s energy minister Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız has expressed his desire to “achieve martyrdom,” while commenting on allegations that his sons had paid fee to avoid military service.

“My goal is to be martyred, if Allah desires, for my religion, nation and country,” the minister said.

The issue is about one’s internal accounting and between him and Allah, the minister said.

The minister also dismissed allegations that his sons had paid an 18,000-Turkish Lira fee to avoid active military service, saying they had newly graduated and would perform their military service in due time. 

Consternation has been growing, particularly among the relatives of dead soldiers, at the perception that ministers’ sons avoid military service. During a number of recent funerals, relatives have chanted for Bilal Erdoğan, the controversial son of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, to go to war instead of soldiers from poor families.

Police vote for HDP ‘not democracy’

Yıldız also said it could not be termed democracy if a police officer voted for the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), claiming that officers linked to the Gülen Movement voted for the HDP in the June 7 elections.

“If a police officer voted for the HDP, only because of the parallel structure [Gülen movement], his hands have the blood of his martyred colleague on him. If one votes for the HDP, it’s democracy. But if a police officer votes for the HDP, it’s not democracy,” Yıldız said in a meeting with the Diplomacy Correspondents’ Association. 

The minister suggested that in police public lodgings, 67 percent of the votes were for the HDP in June 7 elections, just because the parallel structure made efforts against the Justice and Development Party (AKP). If any member of the security forces, or anyone from the judiciary, votes for HDP because of this reason, “his sin is not restricted to just one vote,” Yıldız said.

Asked about the now-suspended Kurdish peace talks, the minister said the state can conduct “every kind of negotiation just to end terror.”

“The state can make negotiations on the issue of laying down arms. It’s not an appropriate approach to present this negotiation as a crime,” he said. 

No one can say the HDP is not supporting the the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), the minister added.

Elaborating on power supply breakouts in southeastern Turkey, the energy minister said the PKK had destroyed eight energy distribution centers, 28 transformer stations and more than 900 electricity towers in Dicle district, while also attempting to shut off the power supply of military units and set up booby traps and mines where they destroyed electricity towers.

The PKK is hindering services provided for citizens, the minister claimed, noting that Varto and Lice districts had no power supply due to these incidents.