Main opposition leader slams Turkish PM over Syria

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Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has slammed Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for his recent remarks about taking part in an international coalition to intervene in Syria.

Kılıçdaroğlu said no leader on Turkey’s soil had stated the will to be part of an intervention against a Muslim country since the first crusade.

“Look at the history of 900 years. No leader has used this sentence since the first crusade – the sentence in which he [Erdoğan] said that they were ready to launch a military attack against a neighboring Muslim country,” the CHP leader said, addressing his party assembly on Sept. 8.

The criticism came after Erdoğan said last week that Turkey was ready to participate in an international coalition led by the U.S. against Syria over alleged use chemical agents on civilians by the Bashar al-Assad regime.

Such statements go beyond “willing to be a contactor” and have nothing to do with moral, religious or national values, Kılıçdaroğlu said, criticizing the prime minister for “lacking principles.”

“Saying, ‘I’m ready for any coalition’ really means, ‘I’m ready to be a triggerman,’” said Kılıçdaroğlu. He stated that Erdoğan owed an apology to the Turkish people and accused the government of forming policy “based on hate and revenge.”

‘Media boss’

Meanwhile, citing a recent report by the Journalist’s Association of Turkey, the CHP head also touched on the issue of journalists fired due to pressure by the government.

“Who is the biggest media boss?” he said, referring to Prime Minister Erdoğan and accusing him of “deciding who will be fired, appointing chief editors, and seizing media groups.”

“He fires columnists that he is does not like, and appoints his supporters,” Kılıçdaroğlu added.

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