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News & Comment
About the Allegations that a CHP Deputy Met Erdogan
“My news source close to the Palace said: “I’m going to give you great news, news like a bomb” ... In the evening of November 9, a very important politician came into the presence of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President and AK Party chairman, in the place that you call Palace and we call Complex. That important person who was stated to be from the CHP entered to the Complex not with his own car, but with a different one with different license plates. Due to the instructions they received, officers at the gate allowed the vehicle with the unknown number plates to enter the Complex. The important person had a conversation with President Tayyip Erdogan for a while and left then the Complex with a vehicle that had again different license plates.” (Sozcu Newspaper, November 20, 2019)
These sentences were given in a part of the writing that was penned on November 20 by Rahmi Turan, columnist of Sozcu newspaper. This news sat to the agenda of Turkey and caused widespread controversy. Right after this news, on November 22, Muharrem Ince from the CHP said on his Twitter account: “I had expected from the very first day that my name would be placed at the center of the claims expressed by Rahmi Turan.” and made some statements afterwards. He used following expressions in one of his twitter statements. “I knew that this was an operation over me against oppositions within the party and it was cooked by a gang in the kitchen of CHP Headquarters. I was not mistaken.”
At the time the issue was causing intense debate on the agenda of Turkey, Talat Atilla wrote that he was the source of Rahmi Turan. He heard this news from a person from CHP, and he was certain of the news, which he even confirmed by asking the CHP Chairman Kilicdaroglu. In the statements he made to the FOX TV morning news, Kilicdaroglu said that he also received information in this direction.
Kilicdaroglu said that Erdogan must respond to these allegations and deny them if they are lies. Erdogan said the followings in his speech at the AKP’s Izmir Provincial Chairmen’s’ meeting on November 22: “In the recent days, he insisted on something, as if I have met with someone from CHP in the Complex... My friends gave the necessary answer. They said: ‘There was no such meeting.’ The journalist who made this news is missing. Look, I am calling on you from Izmir, from where you have been selected as a member of parliament. I am putting forth my presidency; can you put forth your chairmanship, if you are brave?”
While there was an ongoing argument, Talat Atilla, news source of Rahmi Turan, wrote an article describing the details of the event. However, in his article, he stated that his news source was from CHP, too. But so far, this person from CHP was not shown up.
1- In his news, Rahmi Turan not only mentioned the existence of someone from CHP who met with Erdogan, but also made statements what was being discussed in the meeting. However, the fact that R. Turan’s source and the people in this chain –according to the statements made so far- do not have any relationship with the AKP or the Complex throw doubts on the accuracy of the news. That is, at least one of the names in the news chain should be someone who was directly in the meeting.
2- About two months before this news, Hazal Duran wrote the followings in her article titled “What is happening inside the CHP?” and published in the Sabah newspaper dated September 28, 2019: “In the recent days, there have been two events that will be decisive in terms of the CHP’s internal dynamics. The first one of these was the CHP’s presidential candidate debate, which began when Muharrem Ince announced that he is going to be presidential bid in 2023. The second one was that IYI party announced they feel uncomfortable about CHP’s interaction with HDP and it will end the Nation Alliance if insisted. It is certain that both issues will produce important results for the party's internal dynamics in the coming period.” Again on September 21, 2019, a similar article was written in the same newspaper with the signature of Sebnem Bursali.
3- CHP spokesman Faik Oztrak said: “Journalist Rahmi Turan said that he got this information from a source close to the Palace. Later on, he announced his source. The aim of this operation is clear. The goal is to raise cain inside the CHP and to conspire. The operation is of Palace origin.” Indeed, in his previous statements, Kilicdaroglu said: “The Palace is doing special work to end the Nation Alliance.”
4- According to the advances and statements made on the subject, we see that there are two aspects of the issue. Firstly: The fact that Sabah newspaper, which is known for its closeness to the government, published some news about the CHP several months ago shows that there is some work that has been carried out by the AKP side regarding the CHP. As there will be the ordinary general meeting of the CHP in the coming days, for the AKP, or rather for Erdogan, a strong candidate from the CHP side should not appear in the 2023 Presidential elections. Two names stand out for the CHP’s future presidency. The first one is Muharrem Ince who has already announced that he will be presidential bid in the 2023 elections. The second name is Ekrem Imamoglu, who has not announced his candidacy yet, and who is, especially, being prepared to run for the 2023 Presidency.
5- The second aspect of this issue is related to the CHP. When the above mentioned explanations and all other statements are carefully examined, it is seen that there are already serious conflicts about the next presidency. According to this, it is possible that wrong information has been leaked to the CHP official by someone who is known to be close to the AKP. Indeed, although the same information was reported to Ugur Dundar and Candas Tolga Isik who are on the nationalist wing, they did not report this, as they did not trust the source of the information. However, it seems unlikely that Rahmi Turan, who is in contact with the British and received this news while he was in the UK for his treatment, did this without consulting the British. Accordingly, despite the fact that the information source was not trustworthy, the British passed over the news to be published in order to use it inside the party. Thus, they wanted to prevent the person who is not accepted by them in the presidential elections. Indeed, in his statements, Muharrem Ince said: “I knew that this was operation over me against oppositions within the party and it was cooked by a gang in the kitchen of CHP Headquarters. I was not mistaken.”
Written for the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir by
Muhammed Hanefi Yağmur