Turkish political parties condemn Egypt military coup in joint statement

Turkish political parties condemn Egypt military coup in joint statement

Archive photo showing the Turkish parliament in Ankara. (Photo: Today's Zaman)

July 04, 2013, Thursday/ 10:21:00

A statement from Parliament's Human Rights Commission on Thursday was signed by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party), main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and opposition Peace and Democracy Party (BDP).

“The ruling power that was usurped by unauthorized powers should be given back to the [Egyptian] people. All democratic individuals and institutions across the world should stand against such moves, which have the potential for human rights violations,” the statement said.

The Egyptian armed forces ousted Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected president, on Wednesday after just a year in power, installing a temporary civilian government, suspending the constitution and calling for new elections. President Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood blasted the action as a "full coup" by the military.

The Turkish political parties' statement highlighted that executions, torture, lengthy detentions, unjust arrests and many other human rights violations take place during times of coups, adding that elected governments in democracies can only be changed in accordance with the law."

"All interventions, apart from this, are against democracy, the law and human rights," the statement said, noting that the coup in Egypt is just one of dozens of coups around the world that destroyed democracy, supremacy of law and human rights.

Millions of anti-Morsi protesters around the country erupted in celebration after the televised announcement by the army chief on Wednesday evening. Fireworks burst over crowds in Cairo's Tahrir Square, where men and women danced, shouting "God is great" and "Long live Egypt."

CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu earlier condemned the Egyptian military's overthrow of elected President Morsi and said he expects the swift return of democracy to the country.

“Military coups are unacceptable. I hope democracy will return to the country as soon as possible,” he said.

Kılıçdaroğlu's remarks came during a meeting with administrators and businessmen from the Middle East Trade and Industry Center (OSTİM) in Ankara on Thursday morning.

“We see that those who think democracy is only composed of ballot boxes are mistaken. There is something called pluralism. Those who are ruling the country need to lend an ear to everyone's demands.

“Remaining deaf to their demands and saying things like ‘I received the majority of the vote, I can do anything,' is not valid in today's world. Military coups are never acceptable,” he said.

When asked about the effects of the military coup in Egypt on Turkey, Kılıçdaroğlu said he believes Turkish democracy is more advanced and that no segment of the public would favor a coup in Turkey.

He said the basic problem in Turkey is the patronizing attitude of the government and accused Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of dividing the country into camps.

Quarrel in Parliament

In the meantime, there were heated moments in Parliament on Wednesday when CHP deputy Kamer Genç made remarks warning Prime Minister Erdoğan of facing the same fate as Morsi.

“Do you think, Erdoğan, that the 5,000 policemen you employed will protect you? You have seen what happened to Morsi. There were also policemen around him. … There are some realities in this country that you cannot comprehend,” Genç said.

Genç's remarks drew harsh reactions from members of Parliament. Deputy Parliament Speaker Sadık Yakut said he condemned Genç for making a call for a military coup.

AK Party deputy group chairman Mustafa Elitaş also criticized Genç, saying that his pro-coup remarks do not befit him as a member of the party that established the Turkish Republic.

“If the CHP claims that it is not a party that has the habit of coming to power after military coups, it should have prevented its deputy from speaking this way. But it seems that they are in agreement,” Elitaş said.

Genç's remarks also drew negative reactions from the ranks of his party. CHP deputy group chairman Engin Altay said the CHP has been against coups throughout its political life.

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