Deputy PM says President Erdoğan's statements on reconciliation in line with government
by Mehmet Solmaz
ISTANBULMar 26, 2015 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Mehmet Solmaz
Mar 26, 2015 12:00 am
Commenting on President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's objection to the establishment of a monitoring committee for the reconciliation process, Deputy Prime Minister Yalçın Akdoğan said that the government is responsible if there was an issue of informing the president on the developments of the reconciliation process, which aims to end the decades-long conflict with the PKK.
Speaking to the press at the Prime Ministerial Residence in Ankara on Wednesday, Akdoğan described Erdoğan as the architect of the process, and stated that he has brought about many "silent revolutions" during his time at the head of consecutive Justice and Development Party (AK Party) governments. Akdoğan stressed that the government will amend its faults on informing Erdoğan, adding that Erdoğan's comments on the reconciliation process will be treated as orders for the government.
Akdoğan also criticized Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş and the seniors PKK figures in the Qandil Mountains in northern Iraq, arguing that their statements "harm the soul of the process and do not suit the sensitivity of the stage we have arrived at. In fact, they poisoned the process."
Erdoğan recently said that he is against the establishment of a monitoring committee. He said that there is no convention that necessitates the discussion of each and every single issue at all times between the government and the president, implying that the government had proceeded with the aforementioned issues without reaching a mutual understanding with him.
The monitoring committee was proposed by the government, HDP, experts and academics to facilitate the negotiations between the two parties. After Erdoğan said he was not in favor of the establishment of such a committee and that he was not informed on the issue, AK Party spokesman and Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç said Erdoğan is very well informed about the process. However, he later said if the president is unaware of certain developments, then it is the fault of the government and ruled out speculations of a rift with Erdoğan, with whom he has been in active politics for around 40 years.
The reconciliation process was initiated by the AK Party government and began when a cease-fire was signed between the government and the PKK in 2013. This was followed by a series of democratic reforms to improve the rights of Turkey's Kurdish population. It is reported that over 50 percent of people in the country are in favor of the initiative.
Erdoğan has consistently underlined that the reconciliation process, which was launched by the ruling AK Party to end the decades-long conflict between the state and the PKK, is not a matter of give and take, and that Turkey is solely in pursuit of ending the violence and making up for the rights that were once taken from the people residing in the region.