Turkish PM slams those criticize works of Wise Persons

Turkish PM slams those criticize works of Wise Persons

Turkish PM slams those criticize works of Wise Persons

Opening the Ahmet Hamdi Akseki Mosque in Ankara, PM Erdoğan slams those who staged protests against Wise Persons tasked as part of peace bid. AA photo

Turkey’s opposition is failing to match the government’s constructive attitude toward pursuing peace in the country, choosing instead to act destructively in criticizing the recently formed Wise Persons’ Commission, Premier Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said.

“We will never allow another form of terrorism to sweep the streets just when one form of terrorism is coming to an end in this country,” Erdoğan said, in reference to a recent protest backed by the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) in which demonstrators held Turkish flags and sang the national anthem as a Wise Persons’ subgroup toured Kayseri.

“Among those [wise people], which one is against the [national anthem], which one is against the Turkish flag?” Erdoğan asked.

The government has chosen the hard way in launching the peace process but Turkey’s “red lines” will not be trespassed, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said April 19. He added that the opposition is, in contrast to their constructiveness, insisting on a destructive approach.

Erdoğan praised efforts by the Wise Persons’ Commission, formed as part of the ongoing peace process, while harshly criticizing the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP). “We will not and cannot take part in an initiative that will make our country, our homeland, our solidarity, our unity, our flag, our republic subjects of discussion. We are not in any sort of bargaining, and we will not be,” Erdoğan said.

At a protest a “handful of looters” held a demonstration by flying the Turkish flag and singing the Independence Hymn after making various insults and threats regarding the Wise Persons’ delegation in in the central Anatolian province of Kayseri, Erdoğan said, addressing an expanded meeting of provincial chairs of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). “Among those [wise persons], which one is against the Independence Hymn, which one is against Turkish flag?” Erdoğan asked, as he was criticizing the protest, allegedly backed by the MHP. “What kind of tactlessness is this?” he added.

Erdoğan accused MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli of inciting a certain group in public to resurrect the chaotic events in the run-up to the Sept. 12, 1980 military coup.

As he made harsh comments on Bahçeli’s “provocative” approach, he said “We will never allow another form of terrorism to sweep the streets just when one form of terrorism is coming to an end in this country.” For the smooth flow of the process, which is aimed at ending the three-decade-old conflict between security forces and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Erdoğan addressed governors and chiefs of police specifically about not allowing banditry in the cities, just when the terrorism in the mountains is coming to an end.

Governors to take measures

“I want to remind our governors and chiefs of police to be more sensitive and careful toward provocations in our cities,” he said.

Deputy PM Beşir Atalay also said governor’s offices would take measures to protect the Wise Persons. “We will not let such things happen again,” Atalay said on the sidelines of an Ankara meeting yesterday while commenting on the protests in Kayseri.

As a rebuttal to the CHP’s criticism regarding not sharing any information about the peace process and excluding the opposition parties, Erdoğan said, “Since the sensitivity of the process is open to sabotage, instead of elaborating on how we solve it and meddling in needless discussions, we have focused on our work.” Expressing his contentment with the course of events on the peace process, Erdoğan said he would meet with all the Wise Persons at the end of April and receive their reports, drafted about their experience on the ground.