Turkish president says he is aware of 'plot' in Cizre
AA PhotoTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has suggested there is a plot behind the ongoing unrest in Cizre, a town near the border with Syria and Iraq, where tension peaked after a 12-year-old boy was shot last week, the sixth person to be killed in the town in the last three weeks.
“Today, we are aware of the incident that is being attempted to be carried out in Cizre and we are taking our measures accordingly,” Erdoğan said on Jan. 20 in a speech that was dominated by references to alleged dark plots carried out by the Gülen movement.
“Can you imagine those who are wearing formal dresses of this state and those who place bombs in the street using the state’s armored vehicles?” Erdoğan added, in reference to three police officers who have been suspended after being charged with placing explosives on the roads in the southeastern Anatolian province of Hakkari on Jan. 15.
The government and Erdoğan, who was prime minister at the time, accuse the Gülen movement of organizing a plot through a graft probe that began on Dec. 17, 2013. Wiretappings, which include alleged voice recordings of Erdoğan, his family members, cabinet members and a number of businesspeople, were leaked online simultaneously with the probe last year.
Delivering a speech at the Energy Markets Summit held by the Energy Experts’ Association, Erdoğan said the plot even included news reports made through the wiretapping of senior officials on energy policies.
“Now, we have entered their lairs. We know extremely well where the efforts to associate our country with terrorism in international field are stemming from. We are extremely aware of the parties in the alliance inside and outside of the country that aim to divert Turkey from its goals,” he said.
Both the government and Erdoğan claim that the Gülen movement is involved with attempts at espionage.
Late Jan. 19, following a cabinet meeting chaired by Erdoğan, government spokesperson and Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç said the unrest in Cizre posed a threat to the fate of the government-led peace process aimed at ending the three-decade-long conflict between security forces and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Arınç confirmed that both the Chief of the Gendarmerie Command and the undersecretary of the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) were present at the cabinet meeting, while responding to questions on the unrest.
“There is a legal process. We also have an administrative investigation. Cizre is a town where population is very dense. More police and vehicles have been sent to Cizre. Other than that, armored vehicles that can rapidly intervene in incidents have been sent to the scene,” Arınç said.
HDP co-chair accuses government of organizing ‘bandits’ in Turkey’s southeast
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş has responded to Deputy Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu’s recent remarks on Cizre, in which Davutoğlu said the southeastern district torn by unrest over the last few weeks “should be cleared of bandits,” by saying Cizre should be cleared of the “bandits” the government was organizing and sending to the region.
“Cizre should be cleared of bandits. The Cizre citizens will especially get rid of the bandits you send and organize as [the ruling Justice and Development Party] AKP,” said Demirtaş at his party’s group meeting Jan. 20.
During his speech, Demirtaş held a gas canister, stating that this was the canister that killed 12-year-old Nihat Kazanhan, who died in Cizre on Jan. 14, by entering his body from the back of the neck and shredding his brain.
“If this is not banditry, then what is? Explain this, give account for this, and then call the HDP to account,” said Demirtaş.