CHP chairman blames German magazine for 'false' interview

DAILY SABAH
ANKARA
Published 08.08.2017 00:01

The opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) has slammed the German magazine Focus after party Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu disclaimed his interview with the magazine saying it had wrongly quoted him as saying that the lives and properties of tourists were not safe in Turkey.

In a written statement released by the CHP press Office, Kılıçdaroğlu denied making comments on the current state of security in Turkey in the interview.

"In Turkey, there is currently no security guarantee for anyone, neither for life nor property," Kılıçdaroğlu was quoted as saying by the Focus magazine.

However, after his comments faced severe criticism by the Turkish public and media, the CHP released the written statement denying the interview. It also claimed that Kılıçdaroğlu's words in the interview did not reflect his own views and that the article was false.

Following the publication of the interview, spokesman for the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) Mahir Ünal slammed Kılıçdaroğlu, saying, "For whom you are being a mouthpiece?"

The Turkish government also expressed frustration over the CHP leader's comments.

"The way to struggle in Turkey is not through receiving the support of Hans," government spokesperson Bekir Bozdağ said.

Senior Adviser to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Yalçın Topçu, also voiced criticism as he said, "This unfortunate statement is enough to understand what kind of challenges Turkey is facing, from inside and outside."

Last month, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel announced a series of economic and political measures against Turkey. The measures included heightened travel warnings for German citizens planning to travel to Turkey. Kılıçdaroğlu's interview with the German magazine comes just weeks after the spat between the two countries.

Earlier this summer, the CHP leader made headlines with his so-called "Justice March," when he walked from the capital Ankara to Istanbul. Claiming that justice was being denied in the country, Kılıçdaroğlu embarked on the journey and completed the 400-kilometer-long walk on July 9.

The march came as a protest after the CHP's Istanbul Deputy Enis Berberoğlu was sentenced to 25 years in prison for leaking state secrets to the press in the controversial National Intelligence Organization (MİT) trucks case.

Berberoğlu was accused of supplying confidential footage of a raid on MİT trucks, carried out by FETÖ, to the Cumhuriyet daily's former Editor-in-Chief, Can Dündar, and its Ankara correspondent, Erdem Gül.

Previously, Kılıçdaroğlu told a British daily that he was determined to drag down President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and organize more street protests.

"I am not afraid. There is a serious lack of democracy in this country [and] someone needs to fight against this. Our main goal now is to drag Erdoğan down from his palace. We are determined to do this," Kılıçdaroğlu said in an interview with the British newspaper Times, adding that he was "prepared to carry out more street protests."

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