Ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) Çanakkale deputy and parliamentary group deputy chairman Bülent Turan told that the AK Party government will not stop the witch hunt in state bureaucracy for the sake of a one percent people who were mistakenly purged among seventy thousand people after the failed coup attempt on July 15 this year.
Speaking to the reporters in the Turkish Parliament on Saturday, Turan replied to criticism from the opposition parties accusing AK Party government of using decrees which enforced during the state of emergency to silence dissident people.
“We won’t stop hunting (dissident people) for only the criticism that there is witch hunt (against dissident people),” Turan said.
Turan also targeted main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu for his call to the government to stop the witch hunt in state bureaucracy.
“Calling the government to stop witch hunt means to support FETO. Shoul not we take action? Of course we will. We will revise if there is any mistake done. However, this [Kılıçdaroğlu’s] stance is going to give a psyhological help to FETO members.”
FETÖ is an abbreviation coined by the government to describe the alleged terrorist network of Gülen movement, a civil society organization inspired by the views of US-based Turkish scholar Fethullah Gülen who the AK Party government accuses him of masterminding the July 15 coup attempt.
Thousands of people have been purged from state bodies, over 41,000 detained and more than 22,000 arrested since the coup attempt. Arrestees included journalists, judges, prosecutors, police and military officers, academics, businessmen, governors and even a comedian.
Turkey survived a military coup attempt on July 15 that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others. Immediately after the putsch, the government along with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan pinned the blame on the Gülen movement. Despite Gülen and the movement having denied the accusation, Erdoğan — calling the coup attempt “a gift from God” — and the government launched a widespread purge aimed at cleansing sympathizers of the movement from within state institutions, dehumanizing its popular figures and putting them in custody.
“Appointing trustees is government’s right”
Supporting a recent government announcement to appoint trustees to 28 municipalities run by Pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), Turan told that there is no difference between terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and FETO. “A municipality cannot serve to a terrorist group. Appointing trustees is a right. I can understand [HDP co-chairman Selahattin] Demirtaş’s reaction, but I don’t find CHP’s reaction against government’s decision [to appoint trustees] appropriate,” he said.
Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu stated in Ankara on Friday that 28 municipalities in the country’s eastern provinces that have links with the terrorist PKK will be terrorist-free municipalities within 15 days.