No bargains with PKK, says Turkish pm

Erdoğan denied allegations that any bargains unknown to the public had taken place during the talks process between the PKK's jailed leader Abdullah Öcalan and government officials

No bargains with PKK, says Turkish pm

World Bulletin/News Desk

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said his government has not struck a secret deal or a bargain with the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), speaking at a party event in Kızılcahamam on Monday.

Erdoğan, who attended his party's provincial and district chairmen meeting at a Kızılcahamam hotel, spoke at length about the settlement process for the “Kurdish question.” He criticized the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), saying the countries had become “peons” of the Workers' Party (İP), a socialist but at the same time highly nationalistic party whose leader is imprisoned as part of an investigation into a coup-plotting organization.

He accused the MHP of having close ties with the İP, recalling that İP leader Doğu Perinçek was photographed at the PKK's Beka Camp in Syria in the 1990s, at the height of separatist terror.

He accused the CHP, MHP, İP and Turkey's left-wing parties of doing their best to ensure that terrorism in Turkey doesn't end. “It is not easy for them, the arrangement they have had in place for 10 years is being turned upside down. They are losing their bread and butter. They are being left without any materials to intimidate, scare and create fear among the people. If these [parties] somehow were elected, they would send an invitation to Kandil [the PKK head camp] and invite the terrorists who will leave Turkey [as part of settlement] back to their caves. Because without terror, they can't thrive.”

Erdoğan also denied allegations that any bargains unknown to the public had taken place during the talks process between the PKK's jailed leader Abdullah Öcalan and government officials ongoing since October of last year. “I am stating this one more time very clearly. We are not taking any steps that would shame Turkey. We are not taking any steps that would insult the families of our martyrs or torture their souls in the settlement process. Negotiations, compromises, negotiations, all of these are out of question.”

The prime minister also spoke of several other issues, including a possible transition to a presidential system, which he has been advocating for a long time. “There are more than 100 countries in the world ruled with a presidential system. The people should discuss the presidential system. A president is not a king. The ignorant among us are lying saying the president is like a king.”

He also defended various government projects that have been criticized by environmentalists and city planners, such as the controversial Taksim project, which will have the trees of a park in İstanbul's Taksim Square felled and be replaced with a military barracks -- which once existed in the area -- that will become a shopping mall. He said rebuilding the military barracks that was located in Taksim during the Ottoman times was protecting history. He said because of archeological finds that were discovered during the construction of the Marmaray trains, the transportation project had to be stalled four years. He accused those slowing down projects like Marmaray for “some items of pottery” of being ideological but not giving any importance to the barracks. He said a residential and office buildings, and hotels and a shopping mall were likely to be inside the barracks building to be built in Taksim. He also said other mega-projects, such as a new waterway connecting the Black Sea and the Aegean and the Galata Port project in Kadıköy were also going to be brought to completion.

 

Last Mod: 30 Nisan 2013, 09:55
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