Pro-Erdoğan columnist implies CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu might be arrested

Abdurrahman Dilipak, a columnist writing for the staunchly pro-government Yeni Akit daily

Abdurrahman Dilipak, a columnist writing for the staunchly pro-government and radical Islamist Yeni Akit daily, implied in his column on Monday that Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu might be arrested due to a “March for Justice” his party launched last week.

Dilipak likened the “March for Justice,” which the CHP kicked off on Thursday from Turkey’s capital of Ankara to İstanbul in protest of the arrest of CHP deputy Enis Berberoğlu last Wednesday, to a march towards prison.

“Kılıçdaroğlu is continuing his ‘great march towards prison.’ He is going there with his own two feet. Don’t stop, continue on your way. Thanks sir,” wrote Dilipak.

Turkey’s autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Saturday that Kılıçdaroğlu must seek justice in Parliament lest he be “invited by the judiciary [to testify].”

Speaking during a meeting of the Turkish Exporters Assembly (TİM), Erdoğan said: “Holding ‘Justice’ placards in one’s hands doesn’t bring justice. Inviting people into the streets is for the interest of no one. If he [Kılıçdaroğlu] thinks they will find justice in this, he is wrong. Parliament is the place to seek justice. Don’t be surprised if the judiciary invites you [to testify] tomorrow.”

A high criminal court in İstanbul on Wednesday handed down a prison sentence of 25 years to Berberoğlu for leaking information for a report on National Intelligence Organization (MİT) trucks transporting weapons to jihadists in Syria, sending him to prison immediately after the ruling was announced.

On Monday, the İstanbul 15th High Criminal Court has rejected an objection to the arrest of former journalist and CHP deputy Berberoğlu filed by his lawyers. The same court had rejected another objection to the arrest of Berberoğlu last week.

The CHP’s “March for Justice” is expected to last for 25 days and end in front of the Maltepe Prison in İstanbul, where deputy Berberoğlu is being held. (SCF with June 19, 2017

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