The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has asked the Turkish Parliament to investigate an attack on party Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu during a military funeral in Ankara’s Çubuk province April 21.
Kılıçdaroğlu was attacked by a nationalist mob during the funeral of a fallen soldier. He went inside a local house to escape his attackers.
Prosecutors launched an investigation into who perpetrated the attack. Police detained nine suspects in connection with the attack, but either were later released.
In a petition submitted to Parliament on April 23, CHP deputy parliamentary leaders described the attack as a premeditated effort to provoke the locals who attended the funeral to commit violence against Kılıçdaroğlu. At one point, the demonstrators even called for burning the house where Kılıçdaroğlu was sheltered, according to the petition. Party leaders criticized security forces’ late intervention into the incident.
Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu’s initial response to the attack fueled the fear that the government probe will fail to reveal who have planned this assault on Kılıçdaroğlu and prompted the CHP to ask Parliament for a parliamentary inquiry into the matter.
Meanwhile, Kılıçdaroğlu, through his lawyers, has filed criminal complaints against those suspected of involvement in the attack.
Out of the nine people initially detained in connection with the attack, only one, Osman Sarıgün, a member of the Justice and Development Party (AKP); remains in custody.
According to AKP spokesman Ömer Çelik, Sarıgün appeared before a disciplinary board and was dismissed from the party based on the AKP’s rejection of violence.
Erdoğan denies link between ‘Alliance of Turkey’ and attack on CHP leader
In an appearance at Parliament, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan responded to questions from reporters concerning the attack against the leader of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) during a soldier’s funeral in Ankara on April 21.
Answering a question about whether he had phoned main opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu after the attack, Erdoğan said he had already made his comment on the incident, and there was no need for him to call Kılıçdaroğlu.
The president dismissed the idea that his recent call for an “Alliance of Turkey” provoked the attack.
“Was the Alliance of Turkey a call for the attack? Or is it because that there is a martyr here? And it’s well known who has martyrized our soldier. Which parties are hand-in-hand with the PKK, and which other political parties in Turkey are hand-in-hand with these parties?” he said.
He criticized Kılıçdaroğlu for not taking into account the psychological environment at the funeral. He said even he, as president, questions whether or not to attend military funerals.
“There is no need to abuse the funerals. We have to pay utmost attention,” Erdoğan said.
Although Erdoğan denied any link between his call for the Alliance of Turkey and the attack on Kılıçdaroğlu, Naci Bostancı, an AKP deputy parliamentary group leader of the AKP, has pointed out at the incident took place right after Erdoğan’s calls for unity.
Hurriyet Daily News