Ankara, July 21 () - With strictly different reasons, both the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) have refused a call by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu to sign a joint declaration against terrorism in the aftermath of a suicide bomb attack by a suspected militant of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) which killed at least 32 people, mostly young students, in an attack on a Turkish town near the Syrian border on July 20.
Yet, the Republican People’s Party (CHP) has signaled a positive approach to the call by Davutoğlu, with its leader underlining a need to take pains in order to discourage terrorist groups.
“We will sign it if signing a joint declaration will make a contribution to resolving the problem. Why wouldn’t we sign? The entire issue is about revealing the incident with its all details and convicting those who perpetrated these terrorist attacks. Only this way, can we display a joint stance. The government should display its will within this framework” said CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, in remarks published in daily Habertürk on July 21.
The killing of a Turkish soldier on July 20 in a gun attack by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in eastern Turkey showed how the outlawed group had solidified its capacity, while also displaying how the government-led peace process is “a lie,” MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli, meanwhile, said in a written statement released late on July 20, in which he called the Federation of Socialist Youth Associations (SGDF), whose members were killed in the attack in the town of Suruç in southern Şanlıurfa province, “a front formation.”
“Some civil society organizations which took sides with separatism along with ‘terror branch’ parties such as the HDP and the ESP [Socialist Party of the Oppressed] have supported those who said they gathered to defend the so-called revolution in Kobane,” Bahçeli said, as he questioned the absence of the required security measures and permission given by authorities to convoys headed to Suruç.
Speaking to reporters in Suruç late on July 20, HDP co-chair Figen Yüksekdağ said the government has ignored their calls against similar attacks after the Diyarbakır attack and instead targeted their party.
Yüksekdağ was referring to a bomb attack on June 5, only two days before Turkey’s June 7 parliamentary election, when an HDP rally in the predominantly Kurdish populated southeastern province of Diyarbakır was attacked with two bombs and left four people dead.
“Whoever collaborated with ISIL should make the declaration. These 30 young people would not have been massacred if they had guns with them. They were massacred because they called for a fraternal joining of hands” Yüksekdağ said, in an apparent response to Davutoğlu’s call for a joint declaration.
According to Bahçeli, Davutoğlu’s “unfortunate and inappropriate statement shows he has difficulty making sense of the Suruç massacre.”
“The call to sign a joint declaration by four political party leaders, almost like playing into the hands of those who want to carry the conflict between ISIL and the PYD [Syria’s Democratic Union Party] to Turkey, is far from being sincere and realistic.
Where the Nationalist Movement Party stands in the face of violence and terror is obvious. On this issue, it doesn’t have any obligation to prove [anything] to anybody. If Mr. Davutoğlu will take a stance against terror and is looking for a partner to put its signature, then it should first knock on the door of its ‘resolution confidant’ HDP and should convince this ‘PKK-product’” Bahçeli said.