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Bahçeli’s Demirtaş fear underlies his pardon proposals

President Erdoğan has said that “It is not on the government’s agenda” with reference to his alliance partner’s overtures regarding a pardon. Bahçeli, in turn, is standing his ground despite Erdoğan’s remarks: “We have brought it onto the people’s agenda.” It is alleged in the corridors that Bahçeli is voicing the demand for a pardon “whose boundaries he sets,” especially in view of the possibilit
Yayınlanma tarihi: 15 Mayıs 2018 Salı, 13:00

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The assessment doing the rounds in political corridors is that, when consideration is also given to his comments on the presidential constitution and the early election, Bahçeli’s overtures regarding a “pardon” are not merely a “statement of intent” and are made in earnest. Proponents of this view allege that, on the government side, figures including Minister of Justice Abdülhamit Gül, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ and President Tayyip Erdoğan’s advisor Mehmet Uçum have been working on a pardon for about one month. The CHP’s Barış Yarkadaş, making similar claims on his Twitter account the day before yesterday, opined, “Under the AKP’s draft amnesty being drawn up in the palace, if Bahçeli can be persuaded, certain political detainees and journalists will be included. In this way, the AKP is planning to reduce the dose of the criticism that may come before the election and reduce the number of victims.”

The MHP may submit the proposal

It is argued that, to broaden its electoral appeal as it embarks on an election, the AKP is seeking a formula for a regulation that will include political criminals including journalists and the regulation being mooted involves a widening of the probation measure.

It is stressed that, for his part, MHP leader Bahçeli is making an “early move” in view of the possibility of a regulation that will include HDP presidential candidate Selahattin Demirtaş or certain journalists and is insistently voicing the demand for a pardon “whose boundaries he sets.” The MHP leader’s reference to Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım’s comment, “There is definitely no pardon for terrorists” in his statement yesterday is also notable in this regard. However much Erdoğan says that a pardon is “definitely” not on their agenda, it is said that the pair will discuss the matter on his return from London and the final decision will be shaped in this way. Depending on the outcome of the talks, it is noted that the MHP may also submit the proposal unilaterally. It is said that the AKP administration has imposed a ban on members of parliament apart from figures appointed by the party from speaking about the pardon, or that TV programs have even been cancelled.

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