Turkish PM under pressure over recent rise in AKP related scandals
Monday, September 08 2008 @ 02:15 PM MSD
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has reached boiling point after a string of recent scandals involving members of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and others close to the ruling party.
Erdogan has relaunched his tirade on the media in response to the emergence of corruption cases involving members of his ruling AKP, after a brief respite during the recent closure case.
Four incidents surfaced in the last two months. The incidents involving AKP deputy chairman Saban Disli, the Deniz Feneri charity corruption case, as well as two land and tender corruption deals in Turkey's southeastern province of Gaziantep have caused Erdogan to toughen his stance towards media organs publishing reports of the cases.
Here are the recent incidents that have angered Erdogan:
SABAN DISLI INCIDENT
Land speculation and the follow-up for re-zoning of the land conducted by Disli was made public in a document submitted by Kemal Kilicdaroglu, group chairman of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). When questioned about the claims in a group party meeting headed by Erdogan, Disli failed to convince that he was not involved. Disli resigned from his party posts; however he continues to be a member of parliament and cannot be tried on the corruption charges.
DENIZ FENERI CHARITY CASE
The case filed against the Deniz Feneri e.V. charity organization in Germany is being labeled as the biggest charity scandal in the country's history. The German prosecution accused the three suspects detained in connection with the fraud case of transferring donated funds worth 18.6 million euros ($26.4 mln) of a total 41.2 million euros ($58.6 mln) to Turkey. The indictment also said that an investigation has been filed against the head of Turkey's media watchdog, Zahid Akman, who was appointed to his post from the AKP contingency.
TWO RE-ZONING SCANDALS IN GAZIANTEP
The mayor of Gaziantep, Asim Guzelbey, received 700,000 YTL ($571,594) from a pro-AKP business group member, businessman Eyyup Goymen, for the re-zoning a parcel land to "commercial land". Goymen did not pay the money when this was rejected by the court. In a separate case, Nuri Uysen appeared before the courts in relation to the sale of land, which he bought for 14 million YTL ($11.4 mln) and sold 87.5 million YTL ($71.4 mln).
ARREST DECISION FOR AKP'S PROVINCIAL CHAIRMAN
Police conducted an operation in Turkey’s southeastern province of Batman to detain members of a network involved in directing the outcome of public sector tenders. AKP'S provincial chairman, Omer El was among the 14 suspects in the operation and was arrested along with seven others accused of rigging public sector tenders.