The highly uncommon word - totally unknown to younger generations - used last month by the Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu for Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu was "pejmürde." The word is of Persian origin. The TDK (Turkish Language Association) dictionary says it means ragged, torn. It also means scuffled. It is an adjective. Soylu said, "We will 'raggedy' you." This sentence is in no dictionary. It belongs to Süleyman Soylu, who has the title of Interior Minister. He openly and directly threatened Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu with these words, upon the latter's visit to the southern city of Diyarbakır and criticizing the "trustee" shenanigan.
It is possible to reach Soylu's CV through the official website of the Interior Ministry. He is my age; well, a couple of months younger. He has been appointed, not elected, to every post he has occupied all thorough his life. Due to the Turkish election system, we can say the same for his parliamentary memberships from Istanbul and the Black Sea town of Trabzon constituencies; in other words, he was added to the list by the party leader.
Soylu's aggression may be due to being embedded into political Islam rather late. Because, in his official CV, it is vague what he has done politically before the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) was formed in 2001. We do not know how he was assigned to any of his political party organizational posts; who knows, maybe through a family member's recommendation. We do not know for sure.
Let us make a simple calculation based on Istanbul's population. A list of 48 European countries, where, somehow, Russia is included but Turkey is not, those countries after the top 10, that is the remaining 37, are less populated than Istanbul. Ekrem İmamoğlu has re-won Istanbul elections on June 23, 2019 with an electoral margin of victory of 800,000 votes.
Soylu, in the same speech, described Istanbul Mayor İmamoğlu's contacts at Diyarbakır as "şaklaban/buffoon." The dictionary defines "şaklaban" as a person who makes people laugh with simple jokes. Istanbul mayor, while in Diyarbakır, visited Tahir Elçi's grave, commemorating his precious memory, a person who has lost his life for democracy. His wife, Türkan Elçi commented, "Those who embraced every one in their lifetime, have a grave site where the door is open to whoever comes." What should we call this, "difference in level of dignity?"
Soylu, in the same speech, described Istanbul Mayor İmamoğlu's contacts at Diyarbakır as "şaklaban/buffoon." The dictionary defines "şaklaban" as a person who makes people laugh with simple jokes. Istanbul mayor, while in Diyarbakır, visited Tahir Elçi's grave, commemorating his precious memory, a person who has lost his life for democracy. His wife, Türkan Elçi, commented, "Those who embraced every one during their lifetime, have a grave site where the door is open to whoever comes." What should we call this, "difference in level of dignity?"
Soylu called on İmamoğlu to "mind his own business." When I say "called on" I am being polite. He actually bullied him, defied him, which is quite ugly but not a crime.
Well, in this case, what kind of an impression would it create for the regime of that country, for an appointed interior minister to swagger an elected metropolitan mayor. You may, perfectly appropriately, point out that it is the same minister who has appointed trustees to major cities such as Diyarbakır, Van, Mardin based on allegations that were not proven and without a court decision.
Minding one's own business, we can ask the Interior Minister, whether they have solved the Tahir Elçi murder, were able to find the murderers of the two security officers at Ceylanpınar, which charges were proven guilty of these imprisoned people such as Osman Kavala, Selahattin Demirtaş, Sırrı Süreyya Önder, İdris Baluken?
According to article 34 of Turkish Constitution, “Everyone has the right to hold unarmed and peaceful meetings and demonstration marches without prior permission." Is it the Interior Minister's business to make sure this article is practiced or prevented?
Rounding up, 52 heads of bar associations and 20 members of the Supreme Court did not attend the official opening of the judicial year held at the Presidential Palace at Beştepe, Ankara, to protest the venue.
Well, how can the Interior Minister not contribute to this atmosphere?
Who is Aydın Selcen?
Born in Istanbul in 1969, he graduated from Saint Joseph High School and Marmara University, International Relations Department. He has taken several posts in the Foreign Ministry between 1992 and 2013. His latest post was Arbil Consul General of Turkey between 2010 and 2013. The day he came back to Ankara, he resigned from civil service. He was a political advisor at General Energy oil company for one and a half years. Since 2015, he is writing independently especially on Iraqi and Syrian issues. He is a member of congress of Galatasaray Football Club. He has a daughter named Alaz.