Polarization deepens, says industrialist

Polarization deepens, says industrialist

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Polarization deepens, says industrialist

The harsh rhetoric by politicians is worrying, TÜSİAD head Boyner warns. DHA photo

Polarization, hate and hostility are eroding Turkey’s social, political, and economic accomplishments, Turkish Industry and Business Association (TÜSİAD) Chairwoman Ümit Boyner has said.

Terrorist activities and the deaths, suffering families and collective sorrows they cause have been on Turkey’s agenda for a long time, Boyner said, speaking at the association’s Supreme Consultation Council (YİK) on Sept. 14.

“We are afraid that [authoritarianism] will prevail in our country’s administration once again. This makes it difficult to find solutions to our collective problems. Besides, we worry about our politicians’ harsh language by recalling the memories of our unpleasant experiences in the past. Then we naturally ask ourselves: Why is history repeating itself? Why are we letting this happen? Each time harshness, polarization, hate and hostility erase our social, political, and economic accomplishments. We are losing the area we gained before,” Boyner said.

Boyner said the fight against terrorism should not be limited to military actions. “The state should not limit the areas of legitimate politics and act within the boundaries of the law,” the chairwoman said while also warning Kurdish politicians.

“We cannot understand how those who do politics in the name of Kurds adopt an attitude that will harm the rights of the people they claim to represent. We condemn the hugging of some politicians with PKK members; we ask them to refuse [to do this] and stand against PKK violence,” she said.
Boyner asked the government to give an ear to its citizens. “It is not acceptable to suppress the citizens’ demands. Citizens want to understand what happened in Uludere, the reasons for the blast in Afyonkarahisar, the citizens want to know who is responsible for such events,” Boyner said.

Boyner said the association supported a recent imitative by Parliamentary Speaker Cemil Çiçek to seek consensus among political parties.

Speaking at the same meeting, Çiçek said the terror issue should be handled in a non-partisan way. “The countries that could not understand this fact suffered the pain of terrorism for a long time,” he said. “Only when they developed a common action could those countries have some success against terrorism. And these countries are the democratic ones.”

Çiçek also said bitter things were being experienced very near Turkey.

“The ‘Arab Spring,’ has turned into an ‘Arab Winter.’ In the world of 2012, it is not possible to understand what is happening in our nearest neighbor. And it is not possible to understand the indifference of the world’s public. While they are making plans, residential areas are being bombed by aircraft. Not even a significant condemnation against that has been issued. Turkey is right next to the most important change in the world. If Turkey interprets this change well, makes the necessary regulations as early as possible, and establishes a healthy structure, each obstacle we are facing now may turn out to be an opportunity in future. But we must regulate our own home first,” Çiçek said.