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MERVE BÜŞRA ÖZTÜRK

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MERVE BÜŞRA ÖZTÜRK
November 29, 2012, Thursday

Political move

The issue of removing the parliamentary immunity of 10 pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) deputies, who are accused of having links with a terrorist organization, has become one of the top agenda items lately.

 A motion has already been submitted to Parliament to that effect. But many columnists assert that this wouldn’t be a wise political move as it might step up the terror campaign in the country.

Star’s Fehmi Koru says he is incredibly frustrated at the BDP because at first he attributed much value and importance to the party. The BDP deputies in Parliament are the people who might have played a key role in solving the Kurdish issue and who could have contributed to Turkey’s democracy by conveying the demands and wishes of Kurdish citizens. However, those deputies ended up disappointing Kurdish citizens as well as Koru himself, he says. Failing to represent Kurds properly, BDP deputies also support terror. That said, should we support the motion to divest some BDP deputies of their immunity? Koru says no because immunity is not a privilege granted to politicians themselves; it is granted to Parliament, and once it is lifted, there will be attempts to influence Parliament through deputies. Koru points out that some Democracy Party (DEP) deputies were stripped of their parliamentary immunity in 1994, and yet this solved nothing. To the contrary, it caused terrorist acts to increase further at the time. As no one can claim today that eliminating those DEP deputies’ immunity was the right move, repeating almost the same act today would be repeating the same mistake. For a permanent solution, we should choke down our rage and extend the limit of our tolerance as much as possible. After all, he who gets up in anger, sits down with a loss, the Star columnist notes.

Taha Akyol from Hürriyet underlines Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç’s remark, making a distinction between legal and political concepts. Arınç said: “Yes, those deputies legally deserve to be tried a thousand times. But we have to seriously consider what political gains and losses trying them will bring to Turkey.” Akyol says he totally agrees with this remark. Not everything that is legally possible is the right political move. What is important here is to decide whether this move will be politically right or not, Akyol notes.

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