Turkish PM hails nationalist deputy Türkeş who broke party lines to join interim gov’t
REUTERS photoIncumbent Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has publicly thanked a senior opposition deputy for accepting his offer to take part in an interim government, as he bluntly attacked and blamed leaders of both the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) for the failure of coalition talks.
“The 45-day deadline expired; by consulting with the parliament speaker [İsmet Yılmaz], Mr. President [Recep Tayyip Erdoğan] called for an early election. All of a sudden, storms have broken out. As if they are not the ones who said ‘no’ to all of our efforts, they objected implementation of the constitution’s provision,” Davutoğlu said on Aug. 27, after recalling his meetings with both CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu and MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli as part of efforts for forming a government following the June 7 election, which failed to produce a single-party government.
“Since you didn’t want our president to make such a decision, why didn’t you together say ‘yes’ to a solution?” Davutoğlu asked, speaking at a gathering of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
Letters signed by Davutoğlu were sent to the offices of non-AKP deputies at parliament on Aug. 26, with a deadline to accept or decline the offer by 6 p.m. on Aug. 27 at the latest. The CHP and MHP have both categorically ruled out holding posts in the interim government for their deputies, saying that any member breaking ranks would be subject to disciplinary measures. The HDP, however, stated that it would accept offers, regardless of what portfolio the proposals include.
To the surprise of many and at the expense of initiating his party to expel him, MHP Ankara deputy Tuğrul Türkeş accepted the offer.
“I once more thank Mr. Tuğrul Türkeş who said ‘yes.’ I once more thank Mr. Türkeş because he displayed statesman dignity despite all of these pressures. He was put under great pressure and he resisted with wisdom,” said Davutoğlu, who called Türkeş on Aug. 26 after his approval of the offer. “As I also said when I talked to him yesterday, these kinds of periods display who has dignity or not by the taking weighty responsibilities,” he said.