Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli has targeted main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu over the latter's criticism of the government's economic policies, accusing him of supporting “terrorism.”
Bahçeli claimed that Kılıçdaroğlu had taken the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) as a “reference” in his Nov. 24 speech. It is a common tactic of the government and its allies to target the opposition with accusations of terrorism, in an attempt to attract nationalist votes.
“The People's Republican Party is opportunist, immoral and is the defective, disgraceful and hypocritical face of the Turkish politics,” Bahçeli said during a press meeting on Nov. 25.
Referring to Turkey's current economic crisis as a “foreign currency sabotage,” Bahçeli said: “Turkey will not be defeated by foreign currency sabotages. Turkey will not bow down to the interest rate lobby. They will not be able to succeed what they could not do with the coup attempt with the foreign currency.”
On Nov. 24, Kılıçdaroğlu held a press meeting during which he slammed President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's government over its failing economic policies amid the recent crash of the lira.
Kılıçdaroğlu said that he would start public rallies to force Erdoğan to declare early elections, emphasizing that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) can no longer run the country.
“How do we get out of here [economic crisis]? Why are you scared of the nation, why are you scared of the ballot box? You can't run the country; you have lost the power to govern it. Bring the ballot box. I will do everything in my power to force you and your associates into the elections,” Kılıçdaroğlu said, addressing Erdoğan in his speech.
The Turkish lira dipped to a historic low this week, passing the 13-mark, a level once unfathomable and well past what was just last week deemed the “psychological” barrier of 11 to the dollar.
The sell-off was triggered after Erdoğan defended the central bank’s continued contentious interest rate cuts amid rising double-digit inflation.