PM, CHP leader engaged in ‘terrorism support’ row

PM, CHP leader engaged in ‘terrorism support’ row

PM, CHP leader engaged in ‘terrorism support’ row

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Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım and main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu have engaged in an angry debate over “terrorism support,” after Yıldırım accused Kılıçdaroğlu of “laying claim to terror.”

“Now Mr. Kılıçdaroğlu says ‘let’s claim democracy.’ Hey Kılıçdaroğlu, we will definitely claim democracy. We will claim democracy together. But let’s not also claim terror. Democracy cannot be realized through terror,” Yıldırım said at an event in the eastern province of Erzincan on Nov. 6.

Yıldırım was referring to Kılıçdaroğlu’s criticism of the arrests of Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) lawmakers and Cumhuriyet journalists.

The CHP leader was quick to respond.

“The [outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party] PKK did not attack Mr. Binali Yıldırım. It attacked me. You are the ones who embrace terror and terrorists,” Kılıçdaroğlu said in a tweet on Nov. 6.

“You brought judges and prosecutors to the PKK’s doorstep. You are the ones who fed FETÖ [Fethullahist Terror Organization] and gave it everything it wanted. Turkey is not being properly governed, it is drifting,” he added.

In August, the CHP leader escaped two separate PKK attacks targeting his party’s motorcade in the Şavşat district of the Black Sea province of Artvin.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Yıldırım also argued that the HDP “uses politics as shield for terror.”

“The fight against terror will continue until there is not a single terrorist remaining,” he vowed, adding that the government would “take the wind out of their domestic and foreign supporters’ sails.”

Yıldırım said the lawmakers were arrested because they refused to testify in courts, “unlike other citizens who go to the courts when they are called.”

Speaking in Bayburt later on Nov. 6, he said the government was determined to “eliminate all viper’s nest” from Turkey’s agenda through constitutional amendments and shifting to a presidential system.

Constitutional amendments and the political system change will allow “the nation’s will to exercise in the economy, law and politics,” Yıldırım stated, adding that Turkey is engaged in a struggle against the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), the DHKP-C, and many other groups. 

The CHP, meanwhile, held an Emergency Party Assembly meeting on Nov. 6, one day after Kılıçdaroğlu cut short a trip to the Aegean region, calling for an emergency meeting of his party’s Central Executive Board (MYK) in Ankara.

During the two-hour MYK meeting on Nov. 5, the only agenda topic was the arrest of HDP deputies and Cumhuriyet executives and journalists, CHP Deputy Chair Tekin Bingöl told state-run Anadolu Agency.