Turkish PM Erdoğan ‘reprimands’ minister over Soma no-show
Faruk Çelik had previously announced that he would not be able to arrive in Soma in the immediate aftermath of the disaster due to an illness and only went to the twon four days after the acccident. AA PhotoTurkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has reportedly criticized Labor Minister Faruk Çelik for not announcing the reason of his late arrival in Soma, the western Turkish town hit by the worst mining disaster in the country’s history last week.
“Why didn’t you announce that you were on sick leave? It has caused a misunderstanding,” Erdoğan allegedly told Çelik during the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) parliamentary group meeting on May 20.
While speaking to his aides, Çelik denied rumors that he was offended by Erdoğan’s remarks and considered resigning.
The AKP’s group leaders in Parliament also denied the rumors. “There are no problems between our prime minister and the minister. Faruk Çelik is a minister who has done important work for laborers’ rights. The prime minister knows this,” they said.
Çelik had previously announced that he would not be able to arrive in Soma in the immediate aftermath of the disaster due to an illness. “Mines are not related to me. Our ministry’s assignment about mines is limited to checks. The mines themselves, their licensing, and their execution are completely linked to the Energy Ministry,” he also told daily Cumhuriyet on May 20, after last week’s disaster that killed 301 workers.