Thank you, Europe!

Published 03.04.2017 23:24

With the April 16 referendum close at hand, the "Sabah Columnists' Club" have been organizing panels and discussions all across Turkey, focusing on critical issues like the constitutional amendment and Europe's uneasiness in that regard.

Last week we were in southern Turkey's Mersin province and then in Adana on Monday, and we are scheduled to visit Eskişehir, İzmir, Aydın and Antalya over the upcoming week.

To all the cities we have been to so far, we have communicated with people on why Turkey is in urgent need of a new constitution. We have also laid out the proposed presidential system in front of people and highlighted the importance of the approaching referendum.

Our meetings and panels have so far been received with great interest. As the referendum date nears, interest has grown even stronger with people often complaining about why we do not hold panels in more cities.

One of the main subjects at all the discussions we have held till now was Europe's apparent betrayal of democracy and democratic values.

Once, regarded as the stronghold of civil liberties, today's European Union has digressed so far off that it has become the subject of widespread resentment, particularly in Turkey, after several EU member countries imposed a series of unfair and undemocratic bans.

The feeling of resentment and disappointment are particularly stronger towards the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium since the governments in these countries imposed undemocratic bans on its citizens of Turkish origin and Turkish authorities from campaigning for citizens to vote "Yes" in the referendum.

Surprisingly on the other hand, however, they have allowed proponents of terrorism, like the PKK, and other groups to campaign for "No" votes.

European countries, apparently striving to sabotage the democratic referendum process in Turkey, have resorted to all kinds of anti-democratic practices that disregard core EU values when the future of Turkey is in question. And so, we must take a lesson from the referendum process.

They have clamped down on meetings and rallies by Turks with oppressive methods, particular to authoritarian states, used attack dogs to disperse citizens who exercised their rights to protest, and expelled a minister of a NATO member country. However, what they ultimately wanted has not come to fruition.

In addition, the European media has overtly been endorsing "No" votes, for weeks now. They have added notes written in Turkish on their publications published in German, French and Flemish; provided all kinds of support to PKK proponents, endorsing "No" votes, in clear intimidation of Turkish citizens living in the EU and Switzerland.

However, the ultimate result has not changed. European practices that violated press freedom, like the banning of Daily Sabah at the European Parliament, has yielded no result.

Resisting the anti-democratic pressures, the Turkish diaspora in Europe have rushed to the polls and as of today, more than 600,000 Turks, all over Europe, have participated in the referendum with their valuable votes.

In fact, the participation rate has surpassed Turkey's all other past elections. In contrast to Europe, which has disregarded democracy, the Turks in Europe have performed their civic duties and once again proved their commitment towards democracy.

As Europe's resorted to overtly support the "No" campaign, it has unknowingly helped substantially increase the number of "Yes" votes.

Thank you, Europe!

The situation in Turkey is also not very different. As I have mentioned before, our meetings on referendum enjoy greater and growing interest with every passing day.

After some German media outlets, notorious for their hostility against Turkey, overtly supported the "No" campaign and carried notes in Turkish, it only made things much clearer for people in Turkey.

Following Europe's attempt to intervene in Turkey's democratic mechanisms, Turkish citizens rightly assumed that the bloc was backing the "No" campaign, and was trying to sabotage the referendum in despicable ways, only to undermine Turkey.

As a result, referendum rallies attended by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım, organized all across Turkey, have enjoyed very high participation rates.

Hundreds of thousands of people have poured onto the squares around the country, in a show of their support for President Erdoğan.

The Turkish people, who can clearly see that the "No" camp is composed of the PKK, the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) and some EU countries, have taken notice of its true motivations.

Thank you again, Europe!

European politicians and media outlets, who are hostile to Turks and wish to see Erdoğan go in the upcoming referendum, have made our job of explaining why Turkey needs a new constitution, easier.

In fact, it comes as no surprise for Turkish people that those siding with the PKK or FETÖ, who are responsible for thousands of deaths and casualties in Turkey, would only object to the constitutional amendment.

Turkey is going to demonstrate its popular will once more in the morning of April 17, just as it did on the morning of July 16, following the atrocious coup attempt last year.

Europe will see, once again, their efforts fail inevitably, as Turks embrace democracy and Erdoğan.

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