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Blacklist disagreement in the ‘holy alliance'

Following the merger of the True Path Party (DYP) and the Motherland Party (ANAVATAN) under the Democrat Party (DP) umbrella, come to be known as the "holy alliance," serious incompatibility has reared its ugly head in the first big marriage on the right.

Uncertainty about the copyright of the Democratic Party name, which is intended to be a common roof for both parties, is persisting as an ordinary citizen, Cemal Şen, applied to the Interior Ministry last Friday for registering the DP designation under his own name, undermining the plans of ANAVATAN and the DYP to use it. It seems that having understood the difficulties of merger under the roof of the DP, DYP leader Mehmet Ağar said yesterday that they might enter the elections under a DYP umbrella.

The ANAVATAN and DYP coalition may use the DYP roof temporarily for the elections, and if the problems surrounding the DP designation cannot be solved, another name, possibly the New Democratic Party, the United Democratic Party or the Grand Democratic Party, might be used for the merger after the elections.

As the possibility increases for the merger of the two parties to pass the 10 percent election threshold, the former die-hard politicians of these two parties are heading for Ankara. The top management of the two parties differ significantly as to what extent the doors will be open to former politicians.Actually, both parties have their own blacklists. Some politicians who are on Mumcu’s black list are not in Ağar’s and vice versa. The common denominator of Ağar and Mumcu’s black lists is the ban on former leaders. However, the information that Ağar was in touch with former ANAVATAN (at the time known as ANAP) leader Mesut Yılmaz is sending shivers down Mumcu’s spine.

Ağar is trying to calm Mumcu by saying: “Mr. Yılmaz was once my chairman. I would take pride in his membership in the DP. However, allegations that I have proposed he join the party and other reports in the press are all false. I personally have said nothing.” If talks between Ağar and Yılmaz continue, the incompatibility under the DP roof might increase, political analysts say.

Mumcu wants Ağar to distance the party from the former die-hard politicians. He strongly opposes the inclusion of former politicians in the party’s candidate lists, while Ağar is milder in this respect. The shadow cast on this marriage by former President Süleyman Demirel and former Prime Minister Yılmaz continues. Demirel wants some of his close colleagues to be included in the party lists. On the other hand, Mumcu advocates that new figures should be nominated for Parliament, as the old politicians might throw the alliance’s success into question.

Who is included on the black list?

Mumcu’s blacklist includes all former politicians. On the other hand, Ağar thinks that closing the door to many people by classifying them as “former politicians” will decrease the chances of the alliance succeeding. Nevertheless, the blacklists of Ağar and Mumcu do have some common points. Neither leader wants certain former politicians whom they describe as “dirty names” to join the DP. These names include Cumhur Ersümer, Yaşar Topçu, Zeki Çakan, and other politicians who were recently put on trial at the Supreme State Council. In addition, they have closed the alliance’s doors to Hüsamettin Cindoruk, İsmet Sezgin, Nahit Menteşe, Sümer Oral, Esat Kıratlıoğlu, Turhan Tayan, Turhan Güven, Hayri Kozakçıoğlu, Ünal Erkan, Necdet Menzir, Hasan Ekinci and İlhan Kesici.

Güven: DP has no chance

A group of former DYP members paid a visit to former Prime Minister Tansu Çiller, calling on her to return to politics. This group, led by former DYP parliamentary group deputy chairman Turhan Güven, has been rejected by Ağar and is on his black list. Güven confirms that they have long been urging Çiller to return to politics but says she refuses to do so.

Güven gives no chance for the DYP and ANAVATAN alliance: “It will be very difficult for the DP to succeed. Its success will depend on miracles. There are lots of problems to be solved. Dissolution in the local organizations of both parties evidences this very well. I don’t think this alliance will produce any good result. I don’t think they will pass the election threshold.”

Yılmaz is wistfully waiting for the end of the honeymoon of this holy marriage. Mumcu strongly opposes Yılmaz’s nomination for Parliament from the party’s list. While being more prudent in this issue, Ağar does not want to disappoint Mumcu in the final stage. ANAVATAN’s local organization in Rize, which is the hometown of Yılmaz, is reacting adversely to the developments, with Mumcu’s posters being destroyed.

Yılmaz, who might run for Parliament as in independent in order to take back the chairmanship post from Mumcu, will make a show of power in Rize on May 20. ANAVATAN parliamentary group deputy chairman Süleyman Sarıbaş denies claims of vetoing Yılmaz: “Yılmaz and Mumcu did not meet. We did not veto him. He might run for Parliament from the party list. But the two parties must talk and reach an agreement over this matter.”

The most important point in the agreement reached in the ANAVATAN and DYP alliance is about transfer of left-leaning figures to the party. Both leaders have unlimited tolerance in this respect. The doors are being kept open for Hikmet Çetin, whose efforts to establish a party were interrupted by the announcement of early elections, Celal Doğan and Hüsamettin Özkan, who is also a favorite of the Republican People’s Party (CHP). Hatay deputy İnal Batu, who resigned from the CHP and joined the DYP, is expected to persuade some of his colleagues to join the DP. Another name approved by both leaders for nomination is Mehmet Ali Bayar. CHP Şişli Mayor Mustafa Sarıgül may join the alliance if Özkan and Çetin opt for the alliance, political analysts say.

DP weighs heavier in the GP’s plans

As the Youth Party (GP) failed to receive a positive reply from the CHP, to which had offered unconditional cooperation, it has altered its course. GP leader Cem Uzan paid a visit to Demirel to obtain his tactical advice while GP İstanbul deputy and GP Deputy Chairman Emin Şirin visited Rahşan Ecevit, the founding chairwomen of the Democratic Left Party (DSP), to explore the possibility of joining the CHP with the help of the DSP. Political parties are cool toward Uzan due to his image as the boss of a bankrupt bank. On the other hand, Uzan says he does not aspire to be a deputy but rather that deputy quotas should be allocated to his party. If Uzan does not receive a positive reply from the CHP, he might try the DP. Şirin says: “The best option for us is to enter the elections alone or cooperate with the CHP. We are ready for alternatives against the Justice and Development Party (AK Party). Other than this, we have no intention of cooperating.”


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