ANKARA - Turkish Daily News
I am a president who believes that democracy is the only instrument to ensure order in our country and I have always remained loyal to democracy and law, said Sinan Aygün, the president of the Ankara Chamber of Trade, or ATO, in his first address yesterday to the chamber's members after his release from detention.
“I always acted within the limits of democracy and laws. I believe that all claims about me will be clarified during the judicial process and I will be acquitted,” said Aygün, speaking at the regular meeting of ATO yesterday.
Aygün was detained on July 1 as part of the Ergenekon operation for supposedly being a member of the alleged secret Ergenekon organization which aimed at plotting a coup against the government in order to oust the Islamist government from power. He was released late Monday.
“I believe in the Turkish judiciary. I believe that the judges will examine the case with utmost care and reach a fair decision,” he said.
Aygün said it was the first time that he was judged in a court and that he felt shame at the situation adding that he was aware of the fact that the continuation of constitutional order is of great importance for Turkey.
“My vocabulary doesn't include a word like coup and I know that such actions harm Turkish business circles the most,” he said.
CHP and AKP accuse each other
Speaking at the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, parliamentary group meeting, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, meanwhile, criticized the attitude of the main opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, regarding the Ergenekon investigation.
“History records the partisanship of the representatives of the main opposition. Acting as the advocate of an illegal organization could only be the business of a mentality which has a weak belief in democratic rule of law once the judicial process goes on and is likely to destroy democracy,” he said.
“People see who advocate what. Some [CHP] call us judge. We are seeking the rights of the people and we advocate for justice. Yes, we are a judge in this sense,” he said.
CHP leader Deniz Baykal, on the other hand, said the Ergenekon indictment was not an indictment for a coup plot but the indictment of terror, claiming that there was an extensive public impression that the Ergenekon operation was expanded via political manipulation.
“We are convinced that Turkey will be engaged in a historical settlement to face and combat the coups in its history [via the Ergenekon indictment.] What has come out however isn't an indictment of a coup but terror,” he said.
“There are neither coup diaries nor investigations based on these diaries mentioned in the indictment. It has nothing to do with the coup plots. Even the chief prosecutor himself feels the need to warn that it is an indictment of terror but it is a different kind of terror. The term ‘terror' shouldn't be degenerated.”
He said the length of the indictment didn't create relief about the credibility of it and that it should be more integrated and based on more concrete evidence.
“Can such a comprehensive case be concluded with the statements of secret witnesses,” he said, adding, “The attack against the Council of State should be clarified. Otherwise you have to leave your post. If that case is turned upside down then the situation is grave,” he said.