Suat Kılıç is the Gülen-linked former minister who threatened official, Yeni Şafak claims
ISTANBULTurkey’s former Youth and Sports Minister Suat Kılıç is the individual who in 2013 threatened an official who later became the Education Ministry undersecretary, daily Yeni Şafak claimed on Jan. 2, adding that Kılıç cited links to Fethullah Gülen in his threat.
The report came after undersecretary Yusuf Kenan Tekin announced that a minister had threatened him not to accept a possible promotion that brought him to his current post in 2013, saying that if he accepted the promotion he would be “humiliated” by Gülenists.
Tekin said he faced a “denigration campaign” after January 2013, when he was delivered a “greeting from Fethullah Gülen,” Yeni Şafak reported.
Tekin said he was told that if he accepted a possible promotion by then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Gülen’s followers would make him face such humiliation “that he would not be able to go out in public.”
Yeni Şafak also claimed that some of Kılıç’s cadre during his time as a minister were linked to Gülen and have been dismissed as part of ongoing probes.
Kılıç was dropped from the cabinet on Dec. 26, 2013, in the immediate aftermath of the Dec. 17 and 25 corruption probes, which embroiled four cabinet ministers - Economy Minister Zafer Çağlayan, Interior Minister Güler, EU Minister Egemen Bağış and Urban Minister Erdoğan Bayraktar – along with several businessmen.
The probe was later dropped both in court and parliament, and its prosecutors now have arrest warrants issued against them over suspicions that they are members of the network of U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, the main suspect in the July 15, 2016 coup attempt case.
Following news of Tekin’s claim, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Istanbul deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu issued a parliamentary inquiry addressed to Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım, asking if he knew which minister Tekin was referring to.
Tanrıkulu also questioned why Tekin had chosen to reveal this information now, rather than at the time of the threat.