Turkish deputy resigns from party he founded

Turkish deputy resigns from party he founded

ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Turkish deputy resigns from party he founded


İdris Bal, a former ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) lawmaker from Kütahya, has announced his resignation from the center-right Democratic Progress Party (DGP) he founded in November 2014.

Speaking at a press conference in parliament on March 31, Bal said he was resigning from the DGP, the group which he founded after his resignation from the AKP, citing “serious isolation and media censorship.”

“Today I resign from the party I founded. I no longer want to be in a party reduced to only a name,” Bal said.

Bal said the DGP had faced isolation since its beginnings but the last straw was the press censorship his party received.

“We have not appeared on STV [television channel] or Bugün [daily] for the past month and a half. It is the same with all the dailies, with a few exceptions. What am I fighting for? I give up,” Bal said, openly referring to the war started by the government against media organizations affiliated with the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen since the break of the Dec. 13 corruption cases, which had involved four former ministers and their sons.

While founding the DGP in early November, Bal, known for his closeness to the Gülen movement, said he held talks with the leaders of various civil society organizations ahead of the formation of the party.
Bal then had said the “train” had departed and would stop at different stations, while inviting everyone from different sides of the political spectrum who believe in democracy to join them.

On March 31, Bal said being elected to the parliament, in addition to his experience with the DGP, had given him a significant opportunity to see the details of Turkish politics, adding that he did not have any intention of running for parliament in the June 7 elections.