Never again, PM Yıldırım says on anniversary of Turkey’s ‘post-modern coup’
The government will “never allow any power to disrespect the values and rights of the Turkish people” in the same way as the military pressured and ultimately removed the democratically elected government in 1997, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has said.
“We will not allow this. We will protect our achievements together. We will continue to serve the country thanks to the support we get from you. The future belongs to Turkey,” Yıldırım said in an address on the occasion of the 21st anniversary of the Feb. 28, 1997 process, popularly known in the country as the “post-modern coup.”
The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) had pursued an intense campaign in early 1997 to force the Islamist conservative Welfare Party (RP) to resign from office. The National Security Council (MGK), which convened on Feb. 28, 1997, is seen as the peak point of the military’s pressure, which resulted in the resignation of the RP from the coalition government of the time.
“Those dark days are over … Nobody will ever be able to conduct social engineering by using the state’s means. They won’t be able to judge our people through their lifestyles or marginalize them,” Yıldırım added.
He claimed that the government is “protecting the achievements of the republic and democracy and running the country with justice and grace, not with hatred.
“Coup plotters have stolen the future of this country. Any coup or coup attempt is treason against the country. We have now healed the pain stemming from Feb. 28, 1997 but we have not forgotten that pain. We have not forgotten Feb. 28 and we will not let it be forgotten,” Yıldırım said.
‘Cost of Feb 28 was $390 billion’
“According to some studies, the cost of the Feb. 28 process to the Turkish economy is $390 billion,” he also stated, touching on the economic effect of turbulence following the coup.
He also referred to the July 2016 military coup attempt, praising citizens for thwarting the attempted putsch by hitting streets.