Kavala should be stripped of citizenship, deported after jail term, Bahçeli says

Ruling alliance partner MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli said on Oct. 26 that jailed philanthropist Osman Kavala should be stripped of citizenship after his jail sentence is over and then deported.

Duvar English

Far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli on Oct. 26 chimed in on the brawl between Ankara and 10 embassies that called for the release of jailed philanthropist Osman Kavala, saying that the latter should be stripped of his citizenship after his jail term ends in Turkey. 

Turkey and its Western allies climbed down from a full-blown diplomatic crisis on Oct. 25 after foreign embassies said that they abide by diplomatic conventions on non-interference, averting a threatened expulsion of 10 ambassadors.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who said at the weekend he had ordered the envoys to be declared "persona non grata" for seeking the release of jailed philanthropist Kavala, told a news conference they had stepped back and would be more careful.

"Our suggestion for Kavala is that he first serve his sentence in Turkey if this Soros supporter is ever prosecuted," Bahçeli said, referring to Kavala who was initially accused of financing the 2013 Gezi Protest with funds from U.S. financier George Soros. 

Kavala, a businessman and contributor to civil society groups, is charged with financing nationwide protests in 2013 and involvement in a failed coup in 2016. He has been held in detention while his trial continues.

"And then he should be stripped of his citizenship and deported to countries of one of the 10 ambassadors," Bahçeli said, a day after the crisis between Ankara and the envoys was deemed to be resolved by the president.

Commenting on Turkey's negotiations for a European Union (EU) membership, the MHP leader said that "Turkey can do without it, since the world isn't about the US or the EU." 

Bahçeli continued to slam the West by saying that the envoys of the United States, Germany, France, Canada, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland had "targeted Turkey's internal judiciary and independence of its internal affairs" with their statement about Kavala. 

The MHP leader continued to say that there was a "dangerous collaboration" between the opposition and the 10 embassies based on the fact that main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu also called for Kavala's release.

"The makeup has fallen off the forces of domestic and foreign invasion. The enemies of Turkey have shown themselves on the topic of Kavala," Bahçeli said. 

The chairman called the U.S. a "bandit" over the rift on F-35 fighter jets, urging them to "give back our money or give us the planes."

The MHP leader said that the opposition were supporters of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the network of Islamist U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gülen, both deemed terrorist entities by Ankara, for seeking to return to a parliamentary system.

Lastly, Bahçeli said that it's an insult to say Turkey doesn't have democracy, proceeding to once again suggest closing down the country's Constitutional Court.