Erdoğan’s ruling AKP nominates al-Qaeda suspect as candidate for parliamentary elections

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) led by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has nominated Osman Nuri Gülaçar, who had previously been arrested on suspicion of being the top man in Turkey’s Van province for radical terror organisation al-Qaeda, as a candidate in the parliamentary elections on June 24.

Gülaçar, who is also the son of Ebubekir Gülaçar, a former AKP chairman in Van province, was detained by Turkish anti-terror police in Van together with other 16 suspects during an operation against al-Qaeda in 2009.

Gülaçar and three suspects were arrested by a local court. After spending two months in prison he was released pending trial and was acquitted by the Van 3rd High Criminal court in 2012. Gülaçar is also known for his hate speech despite the fact that President Erdoğan called him “a bright, shining man.”

According to a report by the pro-Kurdish Fırat news agency (ANF), Gülaçar had run in local elections for the Van Metropolitan Municipality in 2014 but angered the people with the scandals he was involved in.

In previous election campaigns his bodyguards had opened fire on people who were protesting him. His supporters had also attacked the election offices of the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) with sticks, stones and guns.

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