Turkish PM Erdoğan holds surprise meeting with Koç members

Turkish PM Erdoğan holds surprise meeting with Koç members

ANKARA - Hürriyet
Turkish PM Erdoğan holds surprise meeting with Koç members

Mustafa Koç had said there is no reason to be against the government.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has reportedly had a meeting with two leading figures of one of Turkey’s leading business groups, Koç Holding, which has recently been in strained relations with the government.

Koç Holding Chairman Mustafa Koç and Board Member Ali Koç reportedly met with Erdoğan in Ankara over the past weekend, sources have said, claiming that the parties had a calm meeting.

The meeting, which was also confirmed by a high-ranking Koç group representative, took place before the leak of an audio recording that allegedly showed the prime minister intervening to cancel a tender won by the group.

The contract to produce six corvette ships by Koç Holding was cancelled after the prime minister publicly slammed the group for apparently supporting last summer’s Gezi Park protests, especially for opening Istanbul’s Divan Hotel to anti-government protesters escaping police violence.

Mustafa Koç broke his silence over the issue for the first time since the protests in an interview with daily Hürriyet on March 2. Koç said he had “no reason” to be against the government, but urged for “clean politics.”

He has recently again become the target of harsh criticism from Erdoğan after the leak of another recording allegedly between Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen and a member of his business network, supposedly revealing the link between Gülen and Koç.