Erdoğan says CHP MP Tanrıkulu 'will be punished' over his remarks on Turkish military

Turkish President Erdoğan has targeted CHP lawmaker Sezgin Tanrıkulu and said he “will be punished before the law for criticizing the most honorable and brave army in the world.” Tanrıkulu said the Turkish military once “threw 15 villagers out of a helicopter” and the incident was confirmed by the ECHR.

Duvar English

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sept. 11 stated that main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker Sezgin Tanrıkulu’s remarks are “insults and slanders,” which “will not go unpunished.”

Answering the questions of journalists on his way back from the G-20 meeting, Erdoğan said “This person (Tanrıkulu) is the one who goes hand in hand with the PKK terrorist organization, YPG, HDP…”

“Of course, didn't they do the same things with their chairman (Kılıçdaroğlu)? Didn't they march from Ankara to Istanbul with the representatives of terrorist organizations? But this person you named (Tanrıkulu) is the person who has done all of these, participating in the funeral ceremonies of terrorists,” Erdoğan argued.

“They are never tired of slandering the Turkish Armed Forces, which does not even oppress its enemies. While greetings and support were sent from Kandil (from the PKK headquarters) to the CHP and its presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in the election; this person (Tanrıkulu), with his CHP identity, was greeting the (PKK) from the village where the terrorist organization was established. This nation did not forget the solidarity of the CHP and the terrorist organization, and responded at the ballot box. This person will be punished before the law for criticizing the most honorable and brave army in the world. These cowardly insults and slanders against our Turkish Armed Forces, whose bravery even their enemies praise, will not go unpunished,” Erdoğan added.

Tanrıkulu on Sept. 8 stated on a live TV broadcast that the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) once “threw 15 villagers out of a helicopter” and the incident was confirmed by the ECHR.

“Isn't this the Turkish Armed Forces that carried out the fascist coup on September 12 (1980)? Isn't this the army that attempted a coup on July 15 (2015), burned villages. (there are) dozens of unsolved murders. There are cases that I follow. Isn't it the TSK that throws 15 villagers out of the helicopter? Confirmed by the decision of the ECHR,” the 60-year-old lawmaker stated.

His remarks drew huge attention as his party criticized the remarks in question.

Lastly, CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said on Sept. 10 that “Our party spokesperson made the statement on the issue. TSK is the apple of our eye,” referring to CHP Spokesperson Faik Öztrak's remarks, who said, “Diyarbakır Deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu's statements incriminating the Turkish Armed Forces, the apple of our nation's eye, are unacceptable. This issue will be discussed in our authorized bodies.”

On the other hand, Diyarbakır City Protection and Solidarity Platform, consisting of 94 non-governmental, professional and business organizations, supported Sezgin Tanrıkulu and said, “Do not allow lynching culture.”

“As Diyarbakır City Protection and Solidarity Platform; we remind that we are against these attacks on freedom of expression, the importance of confronting with the past in order to build a healthy future, and we invite the authorities to take the necessary precautions against this lynching campaign,” they said.

The opposition Green Left Party (YSP) lawmaker Sırrı Süreyya Önder said in a tweet that “He fought for his rights for years. He stood by the oppressed. He is our brother. Sezgin Tanrıkulu is not alone.”