Turkish PM almost declared civil war with his lies: Main opposition leader

Turkish PM almost declared civil war with his lies: Main opposition leader

Turkish PM almost declared civil war with his lies: Main opposition leader

Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu shows the picture of Istanbul's Üsküdar Square after it was flooded by rain to his party members, June 3. DHA Photo

Last year’s Gezi Park unrest actually shook Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, prompting him to almost declare a civil war through his provocations, the country’s main opposition leader has suggested.

Erdoğan is afraid of the use of freedom, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said June 3.

“During the Gezi [unrest], a so-called dictator’s charisma was harmed. He couldn’t get over this and he is still holding a grudge for it,” Kılıçdaroğlu said at his party’s parliamentary group meeting, claiming Erdoğan was fond of violence.

“He even dared to declare civil war. He said ‘They are drinking alcohol in a mosque,’” Kılıçdaroğlu said, referring to unproven claims that protesters drank alcohol in the Dolmabahçe Bezm-i Alem Valide Sultan Mosque in Beşiktaş, where injured protesters were being treated during the unrest.

“He said, ‘They attacked my sister who was wearing a headscarf.’ Then, the truth came out and there was no such thing. I wonder, what he would get if there was a civil war and hundreds of people were dead. I have always said a liar cannot be prime minister,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.

In February, security camera footage revealed there was no physical attack on the woman who claimed she and her baby were attacked by up to 100 half-naked protesters at the Kabataş dock in Istanbul at the height of the nationwide Gezi resistance on the grounds that she was wearing a headscarf.

Over the weekend, thousands of people gathered for demonstrations marking the first anniversary of the Gezi protests, mainly in Istanbul and Ankara amid extreme security measures. Police once again staged brutal crackdowns, resorting to water cannons, tear gas, rubber bullets and batons, leaving many protesters injured and detaining over 150 people.

Kılıçdaroğlu showed a photograph of a woman from the town of İkizdere of the Black Sea province of Rize Havva Bir, who was beaten by the police over the weekend because she attempted to protest plans to build a hydroelectric power plant (HES) in her hometown.

“Have you seen what they did to our sister wearing a headscarf? I’m calling on the women of Anatolia. What happened to Havva today may happen to you as well tomorrow. Then, we shall fight all together. Against whom? Against a so-called dictator,” he said.