PKK terror doomed to be defeated: Interior Minister
AA photoThe perpetrators of a Dec. 10 bomb attack in Istanbul will sooner or later “be made to pay,” Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Dec. 12, vowing to take measures against terrorists, while his earlier comments sparked discussions in parliament.
“The account will be questioned brutally. This blood will not be left on the ground; no matter what the price or cost is,” he said on Dec. 12 at a funeral for five of the police offic-ers who died in the Istanbul attack.
“Wherever their supporters are outside and inside, they will be questioned brutally. Our response to those who think we will step back, and want to bring Turkey to another point with these treacherous attacks will be clear in the following days,” he added.
Soylu said those responsible for the attack, claimed by the Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK), an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), would be “wiped from this region.”
“Democracy and law are our guides. We want everybody to know that they cannot move forward by taking shelter from civil society organizations and politics.”
Minister’s comments sparked discussion
Soylu’s initial comments on the Istanbul attack stirred debate in parliament where the pro-Kurdish People’s Democracy Party (HDP) Istanbul lawmaker Filiz Kerestecioğlu said the duty of the state should be to prevent attacks.
“The primary duty of the state is not to take revenge but to prevent these massacres in this country, which has experienced 20 bombings in one year,” she said Dec. 12.
“Revenge will be taken on the perpetrators,” Soylu said right after the attack.
Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP)’s group deputy chairman Naci Bostancı re-plied to Kerestecioğlu’s comments.
“The attitude of the HDP to these issues is understood as obscuring the perpetrators with-in the context of a general anti-violence discourse,” he said.
“The state is not vengeful. We are not a clan. These are the emotions of humans. We act-ed with the mind of the state; we will continue to act like that,” he added.
Health Minister Recep Akdağ echoed Bostancı’s criticism, asking Kerestecioğlu to publicly condemn the PKK.
“The state should take preventive measures, that comment is right,” he said.
“Would you express these words that I will utter now? A simple one. ‘I am condemning the rascal terrorist organization PKK and its supporters.’ You cannot do that. You haven’t done it even one time,” he added.
As a response to those criticisms, Kerestecioğlu slammed the AKP lawmakers saying that she “will not use the sexist, militarist and patriarchal language” of the ruling lawmakers.
“I have seen people who have been killed just because they did not talk within the framework that you have drawn. You have been doing the same thing. For 40 years you have been ruling the country by ‘do you condemn or not’ politics,” she said.
“I am not obliged to speak in your language. I want the war to be finished in this country. It cannot be achieved just by condemning the PKK, it can be achieved by condemning the state terror at the same time… If this attack was really made by TAK as claimed, I hatefully and harshly condemn it,” she said.
HDP’s imprisoned co-chair condemns attack
The party’s spokesperson, Ayhan Bilgen, also reiterated Kerestecioğlu’s criticism.
“The responsibility of the politics is to take measures to ensure the safety of everybody and execute the effective investigation process within the boundaries of the state of law on the perpetrators,” he said.
Condemnation from HDP’s Demirtaş
One of the HDP’s imprisoned co-chairs, Selahattin Demirtaş, also condemned the attack.
“I condemn the brutal massacre in Istanbul on Saturday evening. I wish all people who have lost their lives to have mercy from Allah. I send my condolences to their relatives and wish them patience. I wish immediate recovery to our injured citizens,” Demirtaş said in a written message on Dec. 12.
“I invite the whole society and our people to stand together against violence with hope and the feelings of peace, fraternity, democracy and freedom,” he said.
“No matter how hard our circumstances are, we should not give up defending peace that we attribute sacredness to and we should not lose hope. We have to succeed in saving the country by tackling this troubled period with solidarity,” he added.
His comments came a day after the HDP issued a statement about the attack.
“We are saddened by the attack which took 38 people from life, and left many with inju-ries on Human Rights Day,” the official statement read on Dec. 11.