Turkey launches investigation into CHP deputy for calling July 15 ‘theater’

Turkey's main opposition CHP deputy Mustafa Akaydın

The Antalya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office has launched an investigation into main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Mustafa Akaydın, who called a controversial coup attempt on July 15, 2016 in Turkey “controlled and theatric,” on suspicion of membership in the Gülen movement, inciting hatred and hostility among the people and humiliating people, and disseminating the propaganda of a terrorist organization, Milliyet reported on Tuesday.

In a voice recording on Aug. 3 Akaydın said: “When news started to flow, I told my wife that this was theater. A few days later, during a party group meeting at Parliament that was closed to the press, I said ‘This is a theatric coup attempt.’ My deputy friends reacted against me and said it was a coup attempt carried out by FETÖ [a derogatory term coined by the government to refer to members of the Gülen movement].

“Dear friends, I am the child of a soldier. I even remember the 1960 coup very well because I was 8 years old and I witnessed many things at home. We witnessed many coup attempts. We especially witnessed the February 22 coup because my father had an active role in it. But I have never seen something like this. This cannot be a coup. Coups take place at around 2-3 o’clock. Let’s say they deceived us.

“Friends, there were many articles in the newspapers three months earlier saying that a coup attempt would take place. All data indicate that MİT [National Intelligence Organization] knew about it when the coup attempt started. And the chief of general staff also knows it. A man called O.K. informed MİT. But it did not inform people who should have been informed. And the president [Recep Tayyip Erdoğan] — now he is also the chairman of the AKP, therefore I do not call him president — says ‘I learned about it from my brother-in-law.’ This cannot be true. This is mocking the intelligence of the people.”

The pro-government media targeted Akaydın over his coup statements and accusations that the Turkish government was the murderer of the civilians who were killed on the night of the coup attempt.

Holding a press conference last week, Akaydın asked the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government to prove that last summer’s botched coup attempt was not staged.

Akaydın said: “I call it theater. I would be convinced if you proved that it was not theater. MİT was informed by 14:20, news articles had been written about it months earlier. Are those not theater?”

Akaydın, who holds the government responsible for the death of more than 200 people during the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2015, asked why civilians instead of the police were sent to fight against putschists.

“Why were civilians sent to the Bosporus Bridge instead of police forces? Is it not the invitation of the state that caused the martyrdom of 248 heroes? While the prime minister was hiding in a tunnel, why did not even one minister go to challenge the tanks? How could the president say ‘the coup is a gift from God’? The state has to pay for it. It will. It is my duty to ask this on behalf of my voters,” said Akaydın, adding that a lynching campaign by the pro-government media will not save the prime minister from paying for it.

Akaydın also asked why the political aspect of the coup attempt was not revealed, and why MİT Undersecretary Hakan Fidan and Chief of General Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar did not testify before a parliamentary coup commission. (turkishminute.com)

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