The curious case of Osman Kavala

Published 04.09.2015 23:42
Updated 05.09.2015 11:00

Osman Kavala's name brings to mind the ruins of a history of military tutelage and discrimination in Turkish politics, which today certain circles are trying to bring back once again

Osman Kavala has been a remarkable figure for those who follow the reconciliation process closely. He is one of the people recommended by Öcalan to guide the reconciliation process along with Ümit Boyner, after Öcalan met with Ahmet Türk. Hence, Osman Kavala who has been directing a political capital with tangible funding and named "Kızıl Soros" because of this was also in the Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) İmralı records leaked by the Milliyet daily. Let's remember: "Sırrı Süreyya Önder: Sir, we have discussed everything. There is also the issue of presidency. It is a delicate matter among the public. Also, Osman Kavala sends his regards. People are worried that the presidential system might turn Turkey into an autocratic regime."

So it would not be far-fetched to say that Kavala was a source of inspiration for Önder in creating the "We will not make you president" slogan.

A pacifist who wins F-16 missiles tenders

Those who blame Erdoğan for promoting civil war nowadays would be surprised to learn that Kavala had close ties with the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) for 15 years. Kavala who comes from a rich family, became the head of the Kavala Corporate Group after his father died and one of the very first things he did was win the TSK's F-16 missile protection system improvement tenders.

Kavala, the beloved friend of a mob boss

Kavala's another close friend is "notorious godfather" Sedat Peker who made his name known with his shady businesses in the 90s. This relationship between a leftist businessman and an ultra-nationalist mob boss was exposed for the first time in a statement Peker gave to the police in 1998. Peker described his affiliation with Kavala as follows:

"I have been actively involved in the stock sale of a company that was designing the network system of F-16 planes to prevent these stocks from being purchased by foreigners. Osman Kavala was a shareholder in this company. In return, I took $200 grand as commission. Apart from this, Kavala called me and asked my help. He was having trouble collecting his $25 million share from a land deal he cut, lately. I got this done and received $1.5 million as commission."

A year after, Peker describes his business relation with Kavala in an interview he conducted with Duygu Asena: "There are nice people in Kavala Corporate Group and Osman Kavala is having financial difficulties lately. He is a close friend of my relative, and I get acquainted with Kavala thanks to him. We are close now. I did not say that I drove off the foreigners regarding the F-16 combat planes, he just asked me a favor. The engineers that are working there found their own funding so put them together because I closely know Kavala. Businessmen do I what did all the time."

The curious case of Osman Kavala who is a well-known figure for anyone passing by his chambers at Cihangir, along with its shady aspects deserves attention from the foreign media that monitors Turkey always from a narrow view.

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