Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli has thrown his support behind mafia leader Alaattin Çakıcı after the latter's threat targeting main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.
Bahçeli referred to Çakıcı as an “ülkücü” -- a member of the far-right ultra-nationalist Grey Wolves group which is described as the MHP's “militant wing.”
“My answer to Kılıçdaroğlu and collaborators surrounding him, who are trying to create a perception in the eyes of the public is the following: 1) Alaatin Çakıcı is the son of an Ülkücü martyr. 2) Alaatin Çakıcı is an Ülkücü who loves his country and nation. 3) Alaattin Çakıcı is my comrade,” Bahçeli wrote on Twitter on Nov. 18.
Bahçeli accused Kılıçdaroğlu of treachery in cooperation with "terrorists" and said he was “slanderous, characterless and ignoble” for referring to Çakıcı as a mafia leader.
“He [Çakıcı] is a person of this nation who paid the price of the crimes which he was blamed for by spending time in prison for several years. If Kılıçdaroğlu is looking for a mafia, if he wants to see the bloody faces of the underground world, it is my suggestion that he looks at traitors with whom he shares a bond of communion,” Bahçeli wrote, referring to jailed philanthropist Osman Kavala and Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş.
Kamuoyu nezdinde algı oluşturmaya çalışan Kılıçdaroğlu ve yanında yöresinde yuvalanan işbirlikçilere cevabım şudur: 1-Alattin Çakıcı bir Ülkücü şehidimizin oğludur. 2- Alaattin Çakıcı ülke ve millet sevdalısı bir Ülkücüdür. 3- Alaattin Çakıcı benim dava arkadaşımdır.— Devlet Bahçeli (@dbdevletbahceli) November 18, 2020
Bu durum kapsamında CHP Genel Başkanı’nın hakaret ve hıyanetlerine sosyal medyadan yayımladığı bir açıklamayla tepki gösteren değerli Ülküdaşım Alaattin Çakıcı’ya mafya bozuntusu demek, yeraltı dünyasının karanlık yüzü suçlaması getirmek müfterilik, seviyesizlik, rezilliktir.— Devlet Bahçeli (@dbdevletbahceli) November 18, 2020
Çakıcı on Nov. 17 threatened Kılıçdaroğlu in an open letter over the latter's criticism of the government for allowing the release of “mafia leaders and drug traffickers.”
Çakıcı was released from prison on April 16 as part of an amnesty law that was drafted by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and its ally MHP. Journalists and political prisoners were excluded from the government's amnesty law.
During a parliamentary group meeting on Nov. 17, Kılıçdaroğlu criticized the government after its recent promise that it will start a period of “legal reform.”
“Will you [government] stop releasing mafia leaders, drug traffickers and jailing thought criminals?” Kılıçdaroğlu asked during his speech.
Çakıcı's release had been a long-term project for Bahçeli. Shortly after calling for a general amnesty on May 12, 2018, Bahçeli had paid a visit to Çakıcı in prison, who he deemed “a lover of the nation.”
Çakıcı released a statement on Twitter on Nov. 17 telling Kılıçdaroğlu to “watch his step.” “If you put Bahçeli in the same pot as traitors, you would be making the mistake of your life,” Çakıcı wrote.
While the CHP leader on Nov. 18 filed a complaint against Çakıcı, the mafia leader responded to the main opposition head with yet another threat. "Get Bahçeli's name out of your mouth, you couldn't even add up to his balls," Çakıcı said in a new open letter.
"Rather than speaking like a woman, get me killed if you have the guts," Çakıcı added.
HDP says government's silence in face of Çakıcı's threats is a 'calamitous' situation
Meanwhile, the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) released a statement saying that HDP co-chair Mithat Sancar phoned Kılıçdaroğlu and expressed his solidarity with the main opposition CHP leader. Sancar also told Kılıçdaroğu that he finds the silence of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and MHP in the face of Çakıcı's threats as a “calamitous” situation.
“Our co-chair Mithat Sancar called CHP chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu and told him that the threat letter against him is an ugly attack towards democratic politics and democracy, and he finds the silence of the rulership partners as a calamitous situation,” the HDP's statement said.
Eş Genel Başkanımız Mithat #Sancar, CHP Genel Başkanı Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu'nu arayarak, kendisine yönelik mektuplu tehdidin, kendi şahsında demokratik siyasete ve demokrasiye yönelik çirkin bir saldırı olduğunu, iktidar ortaklarının suskunluğunu ise vahim bulduğunu belirtti. pic.twitter.com/Zkyo99ZI7K— HDP (@HDPgenelmerkezi) November 18, 2020