Main Turkish opposition leader rules out BDP alliance

  CHP leader Kemal K?l?çdaro?lu (L) visits the grave of Ahmet Kaya,  who died 10 years ago in Paris. AA photo
CHP leader Kemal K?l?çdaro?lu (L) visits the grave of Ahmet Kaya, who died 10 years ago in Paris. AA photo

Opposition party leader Kemal K?l?çdaro?lu has ruled out an election alliance with Turkey’s main pro-Kurdish party, ahead of his trip to Diyarbak?r on Saturday.
The statement came after the two party’s officials met for the first time in political history during a bayram meeting.
The meeting between the opposition Republican People’s Party, or CHP, and the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party, or BDP, attracted heavy criticism from the Nationalist Movement Party, or MHP.
Answering questions from journalists on Thursday, CHP leader K?l?çdaro?lu addressed these comments.
“Our view as the CHP is clear,” said K?l?çdaro?lu. “We want to come to power on our own. We are in no search for an alliance.”
“Our aim is to embrace the public and send our message through the veins of the public,” the party leader continued. “Political parties can call for an alliance, we respect that. But the CHP will come to power on its own with the people.”
MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli had harsh words for K?l?çdaro?lu on Thursday, calling on the party to “return to their path.”
As a party rooted in the formation of the Turkish Republic, the CHP needs to stay true to these values, said Bahçeli, adding that the party should not carelessly try to “compete with” the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, through an election alliance.
‘We have to respect art’
K?l?çdaro?lu’s visit to the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris on Wednesday, where Turkish cinema actor Y?lmaz Güney and musician Ahmet Kaya, both of Kurdish origin, are buried, also drew further criticism as a “transformation” in the CHP’s politics.
The visit even drew criticism from within the party, with deputies ?ahin Mengü and Korkmaz Karaca expressing their disappointment.
“Our path is clear. We come from the Turkish revolutionaries. We are a party formed by those who fought for our national freedom,” K?l?çdaro?lu said.
“We have always respected art and artists. We may not agree with their views, but we have to respect artists and their art. They are a part of our culture.”
“Artists are deviant everywhere in the world. Even if we do not embrace their deviant views, their art is a part of our culture. Every other country works to increase their number of artists. It would be wrong of us to devise ways to destroy them,” said the CHP chief.
MHP leader Bahçeli continued his criticism in regard to K?l?çdaro?lu’s visit to the two artists’ tombs.
“As the MHP, we respect artists. But you need to see the other side of them,” said Bahçeli, adding that if K?l?çdaro?lu visited the tombs of “traitors,” then he should have no problem visiting such criminals in prison.
‘CHP will go everywhere’
Addressing final criticisms over his visit to Diyarbak?r on Saturday, K?l?çdaro?lu said that he is going to ?anl?urfa, and that his plane lands in Diyarbak?r.
“We will be together with our citizens. We will exchange bayram greetings. Are they citizens of another country? They are our people,” said K?l?çdaro?lu, adding that the party will go to every part of Turkey


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