‘Walking woman’ to visit political parties in Ankara

‘Walking woman’ to visit political parties in Ankara

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
‘Walking woman’ to visit political parties in Ankara

Aylin Kotil, ‘walking woman’ who marched from Istanbul to Ankara, will wrap up her action today at Parliament. AA photo

Aylin Kotil, “the walking woman” who marched some 500 kilometers from Istanbul to Ankara starting July 8 to protest the 10 percent election threshold, will wrap up her action, at least for now, July 29 at Parliament.

Kotil, a member of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), is expected to meet with the deputy parliamentary group chairs of the four political parties and present her manifesto to remove the current 10 percent election threshold, which has constantly been subject to criticism by international organizations as well as the opposition. July 27, Kotil arrived at Ankara’s Kuğulu Park, where she was welcomed by a small crowd that accompanied her during the last few kilometers to the center of Ankara.

She told the gathered crowd that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) was afraid to reduce the threshold.

“They are lacking self-assurance, because they know the situation they will be in when they reduce it.

That’s why they are insistently resisting lowering it. But that will be in vain because we will continue our demonstrations until the threshold is removed,” Kotil said, adding that she intended to pursue her own personal efforts until she was heard. “They are as guilty as the military, who instituted this threshold [after the 1980 military coup]. If Turkey’s mosaic is reflected in Parliament, it will become a happier and more peaceful country,” she added.

Just a day before, July 26, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan told reporters that he had no intention of tackling the 10 percent threshold issue, despite opposition pressure.

“My thoughts on the threshold are clear. We don’t have that on our agenda. This isn’t something that has ever been done in our time. We don’t want to put our country through any suffering; we want to continue with a process that has been tried before,” Erdoğan said. Two young persons, Cem Bağcı and Ecem Derici, left the earth they brought from Gezi Park at Kuğulu Park.