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.
Kurdish party says it will apply to parliament to lift immunity from all MPs amid rancor over PKK accusations
Turkish President Erdogan will visit China, his first since he took presidency in 2014 and will be signing a number of agreements.
An emergency meeting of NATO is being held in Brussels at the request of Turkey on Tuesday.
"It is not possible for us to continue the peace process with those who threaten our national unity and brotherhood," said Erdogan, who told a news conference in Ankara ahead of his departure on an official visit to China.
Support for Turkey stems from Gulf state’s ‘consistent stance against violence, terror,’ according to Qatari FM
Aselsan has signed a contract for the supply of a Tactical Area Communications System
Counter-terrorism police arrested suspects in eastern Mus province following Monday night shooting
Plans for a security zone in northern Syria dominates Tuesday's headlines
Turkey seeks to make NATO understend "their intentions correctly"
This will be Erdogan's first visit to China since 2012
Conflict with PKK 'in the past brought so much suffering and grief to the people of Turkey', says Ban Ki-moon
Turkish PM warns against the misconception that since Turkey is going through a transitional period, its security forces are incapable of taking measures
Turkish president informs the leaders about Turkey's anti-terrorist operations
Wednesday meeting will follow Turkish airstrikes on PKK, ISIL
Air strikes by Turkish air forces against ISIL and PKK could change the regions politics
Risk analysis centers at airports, improved border security are among efforts to stop militant recruits