World Bulletin / News Desk
Recai Kutan, an aide to the former chairman of the now-defunct Welfare Party (RP) and former Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan, has said several foreign countries, including Israel, had a hand in the staging of the Feb. 28, 1997 unarmed military intervention in Turkey.
“Feb. 28 was more organized and better planned than other coups. Countries on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean and Tel Aviv contributed to the staging of the Feb. 28 coup,” Kutan stated on Friday as he testified to a parliamentary commission set up to investigate coups.
On Feb. 28, 1997, the powerful military forced a coalition government led by the RP to step down, claiming increasing acts of "religious fundamentalism" in the country.
According to Kutan, the tradition of staging coups in Turkey began in the late years of the Ottoman Empire and continued until Feb. 28. “I hope the era of military coups is over for Turkey,” he said, adding that a lack of compromise among political parties of the time about the election of a new president contributed to the staging of Feb. 28.
“Coup stagers used it [the lack of compromise] as an opportunity to stage a coup. Had political parties reached a compromise, Feb. 28 would not have occurred.”
In addition, Kutan claimed that the activities of the Aczimendi group and its leader, Müslüm Gündüz, were unjustly linked to the RP and the party was held responsible for those activities, which eventually led to the coup.
The Aczimendi group and Gündüz made headlines in the run-up to the Feb. 28 coup when Gündüz was involved in a scandal that shook Turkey. He was arrested by police on Dec. 28, 1996, in a house in İstanbul, where he was found with Fadime Şahin, a 22-year-old female student. The investigation resulted in allegations by Şahin of being shared sexually among the group's leaders. The first indictment into a criminal organization known as Ergenekon claimed this scandal had been purposefully staged to incite public distrust of religious leaders.
To 'maintain peace and stability' is AKP's priority says Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu
Turkish president says Russian intervention in Syria will lead to Moscow's regional isolation
Turkish General Staff says hideouts and underground ammunition depots were destroyed
MHP leader ready to form coalition government with AK Party or CHP, but not with HDP
Prime Minister says refugee crisis tests Europe’s core ideas, urges more solidarity with asylum seekers
Turkish energy minister was confident ahead of worsening weather that Russian gas will be delivered to Turkey.
Two countries must ease customs regulations, says Turkish trade minister so that trade volume can increase
Former defense minister says Kurdish group is steered by foreign external powers
Erdogan to address rally for Turkish people in Strasbourg on Monday
Friday’s newspapers mainly cover a fatal bus accident in Ankara, plus Turkish president Erdogan’s remarks on terrorism
Raids against terrorist group target 67 locations across 28 districts
As consumers buy more cars from other producers, Turkish automotive sector could find new opportunities, experts say
'What is important is Russia has to not be engaged in any activities against anybody but ISIL', says Kerry
Passenger vehicle crashes into bus stop, city governor confirms
Registered numbers of Syrian war survivors coming to Turkey have passed 2.2mn
Turkish military blames PKK for gun attack on troops