Turkish main opposition absence problem for commission

Turkish main opposition absence problem for commission

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Turkish main opposition absence problem for commission

The main opposition CHP deputies listen to a speech during a parliamentary group meeting of the party. DAILY NEWS photo

The outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s (PKK) imprisoned leader Abdullah Öcalan previously told the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) delegation that “I want to solve the armament issue without losing a single life. I attach importance to the support of the Parliament and political parties, which represent supreme will.” The senior authorities of the BDP.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has formed a Parliamentary Investigation Commission which aims at following the peace process simultaneously with the wise persons commission. The main goal of this was to enable Parliament and political parties to contribute to the resolution process.

The AKP chose to sign the investigation motion of the Republican Peoples’ Party (CHP) and tried to combine it with its own motion. The AKP estimated that the CHP could assign members to the Commission in that case. However, the CHP not only withdrew its sign from the motion, but also announced that it would not assign any deputy to the Commission. The CHP’s Group Deputy Chair Muharrem İnce said “We do not want to sign a joint motion with the AKP, and do not want to be associated with the AKP either.” The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) said that they were against the commission. So, both parties chose to leave the AKP and the BDP alone.

Will the AKP, which could not persuade the CHP with regards to attending the commission, be able to form the commission with the BDP members? Will an 11-person commission formed by 10 AKP members and one BDP member be able to serve the expected purposes without the support which was also found important by Öcalan? May AKP back down from forming the Commission at the last moment since it did not achieve the targets?

While interviewing the AKP Group Deputy Chair Ahmet Aydın last week, I searched for the answers to these questions. Aydın firstly emphasized that the CHP’s support to the process was crucial. “We attach a high importance to the support of the main opposition. We expect them to assign a member. I am still hopeful about that,” Aydın said.

The AKP Group authorities are engaging in some attempts for the CHP to assign members to the Commission, which is expected to be formed this week. So, what if the CHP does not assign a member? Will a joint commission comprised of the AKP and the BDP be established? “There is no legal obstacle to that. But if [the CHP] does not assign a member, a new reassessment will be made,” Aydın said.

I observed that the CHP’s refusal to assign members caused concerns within the AKP. Also, a commission made up of the AKP and the BDP may not make the expected contribution to the process.

What is the AKP’s tendency? I asked this question to the AKP Group Deputy Chair Mahir Ünal, who has the parliamentary responsibility for the process and tabled the motion. “The CHP’s presence would be good, but we cannot step back after reaching that phase,” Ünal said, implying that the Commission’s establishment was very probable. However, the one who will make the final decision is Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who ordered the combination of the motions at the very beginning of the phase. Could there be a surprise? Though slightly possible, expectations of a surprise are being expressed in corridors.


During the closed group meeting of the CHP on April 9, the party’s Uşak deputy, Dilek Akagün Yılmaz, a name with nationalist tendencies, called the party’s reformist deputy chair Sezgin Tanrıkulu a “CIA Agent.”
This dispute angered party leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. It was whispered that Yılmaz would be referred to a disciplinary hearing with an appeal for dismissal.

However, those intervening in the dispute tried to reconcile them to prevent this. It is also being whispered in corridors that the party backed down from dismissal since such a situation would cause a “nationalist uprising” within the CHP.


The BDP and the MHP are the two parties displaying hostile attitudes to each other despite sitting side by side on the Parliament’s General Board. Despite some verbal abuses, they have not engaged in any real fight yet. However, both parties are rather tense in this phase.

They have targeted each other with fierce criticisms. Lately, the MHP’s Group Deputy Chair Mehmet Şandır warned BDP member Sırrı Sıkık in a very harsh tone for the words he said about the MHP, saying that, “We’ll see about it if he does not apologize.”

Since the tension is increasing each passing day, the BDP authorities decided to take some “measures against the MHP.” The BDP deputies were warned about not entering into an argument with the MHP as far as possible.