PM Erdoğan slams opposition candidate for knowing ‘nothing about politics’
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan salutes the crowd gathered in the rally area recently built in Maltepe, Istanbul, on Aug 3. AA PhotoPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has continued his personal attacks on his opponent Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu, joint candidate of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the National Movement Party (MHP), slamming him for knowing “nothing about politics.”
“This individual doesn’t know anything about politics. He made a gaffe from the beginning saying that a president shouldn’t do politics. I believe that supporters of CHP and MHP will ask him to give account on that,” Erdoğan said in front of tens of thousands of supporters during a giant rally Istanbul’s Anatolian side.
The rally marked the opening of a new gathering area in the Maltepe district, which was built by filling the Marmara Sea and has higher than a one-million-capacity. In a similar fashion a few months earlier, Erdoğan had opened the Yenikapı rally area on the European during the local elections campaign.
The prime minister also criticized İhsanoğlu for not correctly remembering the title of a poem by Turkish poet Yahya Kemal, as well as speaking about Czechoslovakia, although the country was split more than 20 years ago. “What if he speaks about Yugoslavia or the Soviet Union tomorrow? People don’t deserve it. So let’s not vote based on ideology,” he said.
A few hours earlier, during a rally in the Kocaeli province east of Istanbul, Erdoğan, lashed out against İhsanoğlu claiming he failed to recite the national anthem correctly.
“I am addressing those who support the CHP and the MHP. Can such a man be president? The more he speaks, the more he sinks. I believe such a candidate won’t receive any votes from either party’s bases,” he said.
Erdoğan made a sounding call for his supporters to fund his campaign only a week ahead of the first round of Turkey’s first direct presidential elections.
“Did you go to the banks and deposit money? Even if it is one, five or 10 Turkish Liras, the point is to say ‘I am a part of this,’ not the amount of money,” Erdoğan said Aug. 3 during a rally in the province of Kocaeli, east of Istanbul. He also urged holiday-goers to “postpone vacation plans” and to vote during the polls.
“So we call those who are in holiday to come back. We don’t want to miss this historic event. The people will elect its president for the first time, and marking history,” he said.