Deniz Zeyrek - Hürriyet / Kars, June 2 () - Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has slammed President Tayyip Erdoğan for publicly and personally threatening the editor-in-chief of a newspaper that published video footage purportedly showing security forces discovering weapons being sent to Syria on trucks belonging to Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency (MİT).
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of his election rally in the eastern Anatolian province of Kars on June 1, Kılıçdaroğlu said Erdoğan’s remarks marked the very first time that a Turkish president has “openly threatened a journalist for exposing a lie.”
“For the very first time, a president is openly threatening a journalist because he exposed a lie. This shows Erdoğan’s impotence. In fact, it is he who should apologize to people because he deceived and lied to them” the CHP leader added.
“I suppose the person who wrote this report will pay a heavy price for this” Erdoğan had said, in words apparently addressed to Can Dündar, the editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet, which published the video footage.
Erdoğan threatened on May 31 to make Can Dündar “pay a heavy price” after his paper published images of what it said were Turkish trucks loaded with ammunition destined for militant groups in Syria.
CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu said the footage raised many questions.
“There are a lot of questions that need to be asked. From which country did these weapons come to Esenboğa [Airport in Ankara]? How many times did these affairs happen?” he said.
“Turkey will now be up against the wall in the international arena. The hands of both Erdoğan and [Prime Minister Ahmet] Davutoğlu are bloodstained” he added.