Turkish Media Highlights — Nov. 11, 2017
Insurgent nationalist leader Meral Aksener attended the inauguration of the opening of its party headquarters in Ankara amid a jubilant crowd. IYI Party has been found by nationalist politicians who quit Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) after an internal party struggle for the control of the leadership.
President Erdogan sharply criticized increasing numbers of skyscrapers that dotted skylines of Istanbul. The skyscrapers have changed the urban landscape of the city. Erdogan called building owners, construction tycoons and those who allowed construction of skyscrapers as murderers of history and culture.
–President Erdogan instructed new Ankara Mayor Mustafa Tuna to build a cultural center in a tribute to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. He wanted a similar project that is currently taking place in Istanbul’s Taksim Square.
–Head of Parliamentary Human Rights Commission Subcommittee for Prisons denied claims of torture and mistreatment in prison. So far today, families of prisoners made 9,147 applications for rights violations. Of those numbers, 3,228 applications have been made for torture. Mehmet Metiner, head of the subcommittee categorically denied torture and rights violations, claiming that he has not encountered any single incident during his visits to prison.
–Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu questioned President Erdogan’s sudden love for Ataturk, founder of modern Turkey, given the ideological antagonism between his party and the figure of Ataturk. He said Erdogan’s bashing of Ismet Inonu, the second president of Turkey and Ataturk’s colleague during the Independence War, reveals his insincerity of embracing Ataturk.
–Islamist Felicity Party (Saadet Party) leader said President Erdogan is facing increasing isolation and many of his former friends either left him or were forced to resign.
IYI Party Chairman Meral Aksener shared results of a recent poll about her newly-found party’s standings. She told her supporters in Ankara on Friday that the party would get 19 percent of the votes in a parliamentary election if an election is held today. The figure is much higher than average estimations, which put IYI party around 16 percent. Even that figure puts both ruling AKP and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) at risk.
–The lawyer for former U.S. national security adviser Michael Flynn on Friday labeled as “outrageous” and “false” media reports suggesting his client may have been involved in an alleged plan to seize a Muslim cleric and deliver him to Turkey in exchange for millions of dollars.
The rare statement from lawyer Robert Kelner came after the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that Special Counsel Robert Mueller was investigating an alleged proposal under which Flynn and his son would receive up to $15 million for seizing Fethullah Gulen from his U.S. home and delivering him to the Turkish government, Reuters reported.
–A Myanmar court on Friday jailed for two months two journalists on assignment for Turkey’s state broadcaster, along with their interpreter and driver, for violating an aircraft law by filming with a drone.