Turkey’s MHP expels dissident Meral Akşener from party

Turkey’s MHP expels dissident Meral Akşener from party

Turkey’s MHP expels dissident Meral Akşener from party The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) expelled dissident member and former leadership candidate Meral Akşener from the party on Sept. 8, less than a month after she was referred to disciplinary board along with three members of an emergency convention delegation.

The president of the party’s central disciplinary board, Halil Öztürk, said in a written statement that the board unanimously decided to sentence Akşener, who was a member of the party’s Üsküdar district organization in Istanbul, to expulsion from party membership in accordance with the party’s 78/4 – c, e, g, h and i penal code articles in a secret voting session.

The party had referred Akşener and the emergency convention delegation to the disciplinary board on Aug. 16, demanding their expulsion on the grounds that they violated Article 11, 79 and 81 of the party code, which outline the party’s mission, responsibilities, disciplinary proceedings and disciplinary referrals, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ayhan Erel, Ali Sağır and Mehmet Bilgiç were members of the delegation who organized an emergency convention aimed to challenge the leadership of long-standing MHP head Devlet Bahçeli.

According to the statement, the decision on the expulsion of Erel, Sağır and Bilgiç will be made in a future date after certain missing documents were provided.

Erel was detained on July 28 and released the next day as part of the ongoing investigation into the Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ), believed to be behind the July 15 failed coup attempt.
Akşener has vowed to appeal at court the expulsion decision, which she described as "null and void."

Amid numerous court rulings and counter court rulings, Turkey’s Supreme Election Board (YSK) ruled out a planned snap MHP congress that dissidents, including Akşener, had arranged. The decision came amid a growing rift within the party, as dissidents bid to unseat Bahçeli.

The MHP leader had previously accused Akşener of receiving support from Gülenists – a charge she vehemently denied. 

“If I am a ‘parallel’ project for the MHP, then Mr. Bahçeli is himself ‘Chief Parallel.’ But this is not true,” Akşener had said, using “parallel” to refer to FETÖ.