Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan accused the main opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu of planning to release former HDP leader Selahattin Demirtas during a press briefing in the plane returning from Belgrade with some journalists that traveled with him.
Erdogan recalled CHP leader’s words about thousands of officials from the bureaucracy who lost their jobs after the 2016 coup attempt with a presidential statutory decree (KHK) on the grounds that they were part of the Fethullah movement which Erdogan blames for masterminding the coup attempt.
On September 1 Kilicdaroglu said that those who were prosecuted and acquitted under the decree would be given back their duty, answering a question about the fate of the group in question.
Kilicdaroglu was also asked the same day if jailed Kurdish leader Selahattin Demirtas would be released from prison to which he replied “he will be.”
“Do they care about the martyrs? No. What do they say? They say they will release the ones jailed with KHK. If there is law, the court should decide, but they say they will. “ Erdogan said, referring to Kilicdaroglu.
“They do not respect law. You should ask Mr. Kemal (Kilicdaroglu), where does he get this authority? (…) If it was up to them, what would they do? They would say they would release Abdullah Ocalan with a KHK. They would say this for Demirtas. Do you have this authority? What would the mothers of the martyrs say to this?”
Erdogan concluded that he would never allow such a thing to happen:
“It’s impossible to give credit to this [rhetoric]. We will have so many martyrs and then you will decide to release or acquit all these perpetrators! As long as we do politics in this country, these things are not easy.”