Israel’s attack an unacceptable crime, says CHP leader

Israel’s attack an unacceptable crime, says CHP leader

Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu

June 02, 2010, Wednesday/ 18:02:00/ ERCAN YAVUZ
Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu yesterday addressed his party’s parliamentary group meeting for the first time since being elected as the new party leader, setting aside time in his speech to condemn Israel’s Monday attack on a Turkish-led humanitarian aid flotilla on its way to the Gaza Strip.

Kılıçdaroğlu declared Israel’s killing of at least nine activists aboard a ship running a Turkish flag unacceptable. “This is a crime, no matter which conditions it might have taken place under. It occurred in international waters and it is a crime,” he said.

He said there was an attempt at hand to drag Turkey into the spiral of violence in the Middle East, and criticized the Turkish government for not taking the measures necessary to prevent the incident. Calling the government’s diplomatic efforts after the attack appropriate but insufficient, Kılıçdaroğlu continued: “The UN Security Council has convened. We find Turkish diplomatic initiatives to be fitting, but so far no satisfactory resolution has emerged. We know that it is difficult for the UN Security Council to issue a resolution condemning Israel. For this reason, Turkish diplomats need to convince the US.

Citizens of 32 countries are part of the flotilla to Gaza. Until now, Turkey has shown the greatest reaction. If the Justice and Development Party [AK Party] would like to get some results, it should use diplomacy to ensure other countries also take action. We want an international commission to investigate this and punish the culprits. Justice for our citizens who died there should be sought.” At least four of the nine killed in the Israeli onslaught were Turkish citizens, reports said.

Meanwhile, the new deputy chairmen of the CHP’s parliamentary group were announced yesterday: Trabzon deputy Akif Hamzaçebi and Yalova deputy Muharrem İnce. The two new deputy chairmen replace Kılıçdaroğlu, who held the post before his election as party leader, and Hakkı Süha Okay, who was appointed deputy chairman. Meanwhile, two independent deputies -- Kamer Genç representing Tunceli and Emrehan Halıcı of Ankara deputy -- joined the CHP yesterday. The changes bring the number of CHP seats in Parliament to 99 and reduces the number of independents to 10.

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