Turkish PM not getting invite to coup panel, commission head says
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan DHA photoThere are no plans to invite Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to testify about the e-memorandum of April 27, 2007, the head of the parliamentary commission tasked with investigating military interventions said today, dismissing suggestions that he might be invited.
“It has disturbed us that something which we never talked about or evaluated before made the headlines,” Nimet Baş said, adding that there were no plans to invite the premier on the agenda. “No evaluation such this has been made among us.”
However, commission spokesman İdris Şahin said earlier today that the parliamentary panel was planning to invite the prime minister to testify on the subject.
"We're likely to invite the prime minister. We haven't sent him an invitation, yet but when we're done with the Feb. 28 hearings [into the ‘post-modern coup’ of 1997], we're thinking of inviting him,” he said.
The e-memorandum, posted on the military’s website around midnight on April 27, 2007, was the first episode in a chain of events that forced early elections. In the statement, the army threatened to step in to protect Turkey’s secular system after Abdullah Gül became a candidate for president.
He added that Gen. Yaşar Büyükanıt, the head of the General Staff at the time of the e-memorandum, was also invited to testify but that the exact date of his testimony had not yet been determined.
Opposition deputies have previously insisted that Erdoğan should also testify about the e-memorandum, as well as the Dolmabahçe talks, a private meeting between Erdoğan and Büyükanıt at Dolmabahçe Palace at the time that has been the subject of much speculation over a possible secret deal.
The e-memorandum, posted on the military’s website around midnight on April 27, 2007, was the first episode in a chain of events that forced early elections. In the statement, the army threatened to step in to protect Turkey’s secular system, after Abdullah Gül became candidate for president. Following his retirement, Büyükanıt publicly said he personally penned the statement; the fact that he has ducked investigation so far has fanned speculation that he is enjoying protection under a deal he made with Erdoğan during the Dolmabahçe talks.