Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has accused the government of continuing Turkey’s emergency rule in order to conceal its former support to the network of U.S.-based Fethullah Gülen, accusing President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of being the “highest ranking politician with links to [the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization] FETÖ.”
“They have been pursuing the state of emergency in order to cover up the political network of FETÖ and to silence the nation on this issue. FETÖ’s links among industrialists, baklava makers, shopkeepers, workers, teachers, judges and prosecutors have been revealed,” Kılıçdaroğlu said March 27.
“They have left the fight with FETÖ aside and begun a new struggle. They struggle in every way to strengthen their own dictatorial regime,” he added, specifically referring to jailed Turkish journalists including daily Cumhuriyet CEO Akın Atalay, who has been behind bars for 17 months on “terror” charges.
Gülen and his network are widely believed to have orchestrated Turkey’s July 2016 coup attempt. Thousands of people, including military officers and civil servants, have been jailed on suspected links to what the authorities now call FETÖ since the coup attempt.