Turkey’s main opposition deputy removed from party after controversial speech
Aysel Alp ANKARA
Süheyl Batum. AA PhotoMain opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Süheyl Batum has been removed from the party due to a speech he made after the resignation of former CHP deputy Emine Ülker Tarhan.
CHP Eskişehir deputy Batum was removed from the CHP by the party’s High Discipline Board on Dec. 11, over his speech in late October.
Speaking to reporters, Batum said the decision had still yet to be conveyed to him and he had learned about it from the press, claiming that he was the victim of a “plot.”
“What is being done to me is illegal from the beginning … I did not say any of those words. I proved that I didn’t say them with the voice recordings that I got from journalists and news texts … I openly say that I did not say the words that I am alleged to have said. They wanted to remove me from the party because I criticized the party administration,” he said.
After Tarhan resigned from the CHP on Oct. 31, Batum said “such resignations would put the party on track by shaking it up.”
He was subsequently sent to the CHP’s disciplinary board for “opening the party to debate in public and getting into an attitude that could jeopardize the party’s integrity.”
Tarhan, who was from the CHP’s nationalist wing, resigned from the party in a statement that severely criticized the CHP’s current policies, which she described as “detached from the people” and not helping the party come to power.
Tarhan, along with retired Rear Admiral Türker Ertürk and the former mayor of Istanbul’s Maltepe district, Mustafa Zengin, filed an application to the Interior Ministry to officially found the “Anadolu Party” (Anatolia Party) on Nov. 14.