Category Archives: Turkey P.O.

+++ P.O. (BBG) Turkey Election Overhaul Seen Boosting Erdogan Gains Momentum


Mr Erdogan is a dictator.

And someone one is even advised not to have tea.

But i would have tea every day with Mr Muhammed Fethullah Gülen Hocaefendi.

That has recently been made stateless by Turkey.

It says it all.


«Fethullah Gülen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

M. Fethullah Gülen

Gülen in 2016

Fethullah Gülen
 27 April 1941 (age 76)
Pasinler, Erzurum, Turkey

Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Turkey (as of 2017, stateless)



Main interests
 Islamic thought, Islamic conservatism, Turkish politics, anti-communism, Turkish nationalism, education, interfaith dialogue among the People of the Book, Sufism

Notable ideas
 Gülen movement

Muhammed Fethullah Gülen Hocaefendi (Turkish:  – the honorific Hoca Efendi, used among followers, translates to “respected teacher”); born 27 April 1941) is a Turkish preacher, former imam, writer, and political figure. He is the founder of the Gülen movement (known as Hizmet meaning service in Turkish), which is 3 to 6 million strong in Turkey and has an empire of affiliated banks, media, construction companies, and schools, especially those providing primary and secondary education, in Turkey (in which business entities and foundations have been closed down by the Turkish government by the thousands in 2017) and in Africa, Central Asia, the Americas, and Europe. Hizmet’s most populous organization is a moderate Islamic advocacy group, Alliance for Shared Values. Gulen lives in exile in the United States, residing in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania. He is sought by the Turkish government for alleged involvement in the 2016 coup attempt in Turkey.

Gülen is actively involved in the societal debate concerning the future of the Turkish state, and Islam in the modern world. He has been described in the English-language media as an imam “who promotes a tolerant Islam which emphasises altruism, hard work and education” and as “one of the world’s most important Muslim figures.” However, James Jeffrey, former American ambassador in Ankara, has claimed that the Gülen movement, aside from its “legal and visible” activities, had infiltrated the Turkish armed forces, police and judiciary.

The Gülen movement (often referred as Gulenists) has been characterized as a civil society group promoting education, religious tolerance, and building social networks. Having shared a major goal of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of empowering religious individuals in civil life officially disenfranchised under then existing law in secular Turkey, Gulen and his movement were aligned with Erdogan prior to 2013. The alliance was destroyed after the 2013 corruption investigations in Turkey. Erdoğan accused Gülen of being behind the corruption investigations. He is currently on Turkey’s most-wanted-terrorist list and is accused of leading what the current Turkish officials call the Gülenist Terror Organisation (Fethullahçı Terör Örgütü, FETÖ). A Turkish criminal court issued an arrest warrant for Gülen Turkey is demanding the extradition of Gülen from the United States. However, U.S. figures in general do not believe he is associated with any terrorist activity, and have requested evidence to be provided by the Turkish Government to substantiate the allegations in the warrant requesting extradition.

Gülen has been described as a Kurdophobic preacher. He was accused of being against the peace process which had aimed to resolve the long-running Kurdish-Turkish conflict. However, Gülen’s supporters dismiss this claim, citing his work with many Kurds.”»

“That’s All Folks!”

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(Bloomberg) — Sweeping changes to Turkey’s electoral laws
that could help President Recep Tayyip Erdogan tighten his grip
on power are set to begin their passage through parliament, with
the opposition warning that they would increase the risk of vote
The proposed overhaul comes just over 18 months before the
scheduled date for one of the most pivotal votes in modern
Turkey. When Turks go to the polls next November, or earlier if
plans are advanced, they’ll pick a new parliament and formally
concentrate executive power in the office of the president.
The amendments allow parties to form alliances that would
help them enter parliament, relaxing the current rule that
requires them to secure 10 percent of the vote each. The most
likely beneficiary would be the nationalist MHP, which some
analysts say has lost support since it became a junior partner
to Erdogan’s ruling AKP.
The changes, which lawmakers will begin debating Monday,
will help ensure Erdogan stays at the pinnacle of power as
Turkey begins a controversial transformation from decades of
parliamentary democracy into an executive presidency. Erdogan
has cracked down on political opponents since a failed coup
attempt almost two years ago, and has risked ties with the US
and Europe by launching an offensive against Kurdish militias
inside Syria.
Together the AKP and MHP hold 352 seats in Turkey’s 550-
seat parliament, way above the 276 they need to ensure the bill
becomes law.
Under the alliance’s draft blueprint, authorities would
also be able to appoint government officials to run ballot
stations, relocate election stations on security grounds, let
law-enforcement officials monitor voting, and permit the
counting of unstamped ballot papers — an issue which clouded
the 2017 referendum on presidential rule.

‘Shadow of Guns’

Put together, the measures amount to a “serious threat” to
fair and free elections, the main opposition CHP said in a
statement on Thursday, following meetings with representatives
of eight other parties.
“The risk of holding elections under the shadow of guns
could put voters under pressure,” CHP lawmaker Ugur Bayraktutan
told a parliamentary committee, referring to the prospect of
armed security forces in voting stations.
The government says the changes to the way ballots are
conducted are necessary to secure the vote in Turkey’s southeast
from the influence of the Kurdish separatists.
Every vote could count next year. In the referendum on an
empowered presidency, Erdogan won only narrowly, while most of
his parliamentary landslides were secured with less than 50
percent backing. Under the new system, he’ll need a clear
majority for a first-round victory.

Nationalist Fervor

“The president knows that a small shift in votes could mean
a defeat in a contest he cannot lose,” Wolfango Piccoli, co-
founder of Teneo Intelligence in London, said in an emailed note
on Friday. “Further initiatives to maximize the chances of a
positive outcome on ballot day are likely.”
The fragmented opposition has been left on the “back foot”
by the AKP-MHP alliance, he said.
Erdogan’s party has never called early elections during its
15 years in power, and officials insist there are no plans to go
to the polls before November 2019.
Still, the AKP has surveyed opinion for any signs of
shifting voting intentions. Nationalist fervor has gripped
Turkey since the army launched an offensive against Syrian
Kurdish fighters, and the economy appears to have been put on a
campaign footing.

+++ P.O. (CBC) Turkey slams Germany’s ‘disrespectful messages’ about Erdogan, democratic values


In this exceptional case , and on Turkey, I fully support the position and the views of Chanceler Merkel.

Please revisit my numerous P.O. on Turkey and on Mr Edogan

Turkey, in my opinion, should never, ever, be a Member of the European Union.

Full Stop.

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereir

(CBC) Ibrahim Kalin, spokesman for the Turkish presidency, said in a tweet Monday that Merkel and her Social Democratic Party rival were seeking to divert attention from urgent issues in their country and in Europe, such as a surge in discrimination and racism.

In Sunday’s debate, Schulz said he would seek to end long-running but currently stalled talks on Turkey joining the EU over what he perceived to be Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian policies.

Germany Election

Merkel, left, and Martin Schulz are seen in a TV debate in Berlin on Sunday. (RTL via AP)

Merkel, who has previously expressed doubts about Turkey ever joining the EU, refused to commit firmly to the move, which would have to be agreed among EU members. She sharply criticized Erdogan’s rule, saying: “Turkey is departing from all democratic practices at breakneck speed.”

Candidates blasted for ‘myopic views’

Relations between the two countries have been tense for some time. Turkey has blamed Germany for harbouring people with alleged links to last year’s failed coup against Erdogan as well as outlawed Kurdish militant groups, while Berlin has accused Turkey of backsliding on democratic values. More than 50,000 were arrested in the aftermath of the coup.

Omer Celik, Turkey’s chief negotiator for its European Union bid, slammed the candidates for their “careless” tone.

“We do not accept these disrespectful messages against Turkey,” he said in a tweet.

Italy EU Turkey

Omer Celik, Turkey’s chief negotiator for its European Union bid, slammed the candidates for their ‘careless’ tone. (Fabio Frustaci/Associated Press)

Turkey’s foreign ministry also released a statement criticizing the “myopic views” of politicians and reminding the world of Turkey’s role in stemming a migrant crisis from pushing the EU into “a big chaos.”

The ministry said populistic campaign politics should not undermine bilateral relations and warned against encouraging xenophobia and Islamophobia.

12 Germans detained in Turkey

One reason Merkel gave for keeping lines of communication open with Turkey was Germany’s attempts to secure the release of 12 German citizens being held there for what Berlin considers political reasons.

Last week, for example, two were detained at Antalya Airport.

German Foreign Ministry spokesman Rainer Breul told reporters in Berlin on Monday that one of them was released. The German couple of Turkish descent were detained for alleged links to the network of U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Ankara blames Gulen, a former ally of Erdogan, for last year’s coup attempt in Turkey. Gulen denies the claim.

Polls show a double-digit lead for Merkel’s conservative bloc over Schulz’s centre-left Social Democrats before Germany’s Sept. 24 election.

+++ P.O. (Reuters) In shift, Merkel backs end to EU-Turkey membership talks

…Mrs Merkel delivered the obvious…
…and smart she is…

…the only question is…
…why it took her so long…
…As I wrote many times before, in my opinion Mr Erdogan is not even fit to have a cup of  
coffee with us.
…Full stop.
Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira
(Reuters) German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday she would seek an end to Turkey’s membership talks with the European Union in an apparent shift of her position during a televised debate weeks before a German election.

“The fact is clear that Turkey should not become a member of the EU,” Merkel said in the debate with her Social Democrat (SPD) challenger Martin Schulz.

“I’ll speak to my (EU) colleagues to see if we can reach a joint position on this so that we can end these accession talks,” Merkel added.

The comments are likely to worsen already strained ties between the two NATO allies that have deepened since Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan’s crackdown on opponents in the aftermath of a failed coup attempt in July of last year.

There was no immediate reaction from Turkey which is in the midst of a national religious holiday.

Merkel’s comments came after Schulz appeared to surprise her by vowing to push for an end to the negotiations if he was elected chancellor in the Sept. 24 federal election.

“If I become German chancellor, if the people of this country give me a mandate, then I will propose to the European Council that we end the membership talks with Turkey,” Schulz said. “Whether we can win over all the countries for this I don’t know. But I will fight for this.”

Merkel initially cautioned against such a move, saying it would be irresponsible to endanger ties with Turkey at a time when German citizens are imprisoned there.

Twelve German citizens are now in Turkish detention on political charges, four of them holding dual citizenship.

“I do not intend to break off diplomatic relations with Turkey just because we’re in an election campaign and want to show each other who is tougher,” she said.

But after the moderators had moved on and asked the two candidates a question about U.S. President Donald Trump, Merkel returned to the Turkey issue, suddenly throwing her weight behind an end to the membership talks.

Merkel’s conservative party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), has long opposed Turkish membership in the European Union.

But the green light for membership talks was given months before Merkel became chancellor in 2005 and she has always said that she will respect that decision, referring to the negotiations as “open ended”.

The accession talks have ground to a virtual halt and EU leaders have stepped up their criticism of Erdogan.

+++ P.O. (AFP) Turkey bans TV dating shows after blocking Wikipedia access

As I have written before, I would not even accept an invitation from Mr Erdogan, even if he promised to return my Grand Mother’s estates in Smyrna.
How unfortunate for the Turkish People, that have all my respect and consideration.
Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira
(AFP)  Turkey has blocked all access to Wikipedia and banned television dating shows, adding to fears of a crackdown after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s victory in a referendum on enhancing his powers.

The government also dismissed almost 4,000 public officials in the latest wave of the purge under the over nine-month state of emergency that has followed last July’s failed coup.

Erdogan, who has dominated Turkey since 2003 as premier and now president, narrowly won the April 16 referendum on enhancing his powers which supporters believe will lead to better government but critics say creates one man rule.

Turkey’s Information and Communication Technologies Authority (BTK) said it had implemented the ban against online encyclopedia with an administrative order.

Turkish state media said the ban was imposed because Wikipedia had failed to remove content promoting terror and accusing Turkey of cooperation with various terror groups.

There was no indication when the ban might be removed, with a formal court order expected to follow in the coming days.

Reacting to the ban, Wikipedia’s founder Jimmy Wales wrote on Twitter: “Access to information is a fundamental human right. Turkish people, I will always stand with you to fight for this right.”

Access to information is a fundamental human right. Turkish people I will always stand with you to fight for this right. 

Residents in Istanbul were unable to access any pages of Wikipedia on Saturday without using a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

The order was issued under Law 5651, passed in 2014 by parliament, which bolstered the BTK’s control over the internet and was seen at the time by freedom of expression activists as an erosion of online liberties.

Turkey has become notorious over the last years for temporarily blocking access to popular sites, including Facebook and Twitter, in the wake of major events such as mass protests or terror attacks.

In a decree issued late Saturday evening, Turkey also banned hugely popular television dating shows, a move that been mooted for months by the government.

“In radio and television broadcasting services, such programmes in which people are introduced to find a friend…. cannot be permitted,” said the text of the decree.

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said in March that the ban was in the pipeline, arguing the shows do not fit in with Turkish traditions and customs.

“There are some strange programmes that would scrap the institution of family, take away its nobility and sanctity,” Kurtulmus said at the time.

Opponents of the ruling Islamic-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP) government frequently voice fears that Turkey is sliding toward conservative Islam under Erdogan.

But AKP supporters have said that dating shows receive thousands of complaints every year and the ban is in the public interest.

Under a separate decree, 3,974 public officials were dismissed by Turkey including more than 1,000 people working with the justice ministry and over 1,000 staff employed by the army.

Those fired from the air force included over 100 pilots, it added. Almost 500 academics working for state institutions were also dismissed.

The dismissals came after Turkey on April 26 detained more than 1,000 people and suspended over 9,100 police in a vast new crackdown against alleged supporters of the US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen blamed for the failed July 15 coup bid.

An already nine month state of emergency in place since the coup bid has seen a total of 47,000 people arrested and prompted fears the crackdown is being used to go after all opponents of Erdogan.

Gulen denies being behind the coup but the authorities argue the purges are needed to wipe out his “virus” from society.

The crackdown has also caused major strains with the European Union, which Turkey has sought to join for the last half century in a so far fruitless membership drive.

But German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Saturday the EU’s top officials will seek a meeting with Erdogan at a Nato summit next month despite the mounting tensions with Ankara.

+++ M.P.O. (BBG) Erdogan Says Turkey Faces ‘Economic Sabotage’ as Lira Plunges


…Obviously “Economic Sabotage” by Mr Erdogan himself, I would argue…

It is also obvious that Mr Erdogan’s actions have discouraged even the bravest of investors.

No investor would put money in a Country were  the rule of law  is not at all guaranteed.

To say the least…

I am afraid that the “Erdogan Problem” has all the ingredients for a major disaster.

What a shame and what a tragedy for the Turkish People!

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(BBG) Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday said his political enemies are trying to sabotage the economy by speculating on the stock market, foreign exchange rate and interest rates after failing to overthrow his administration in July.

The lira plunged to record lows over the past week even as Erdogan urged Turks to convert their foreign currency savings into liras and gold while vowing to keep up his fight against high interest rates.

Erdogan is trying to verbally stem a run on the lira, which has lost more than any other emerging market currency over the past month, damping everything from consumer sentiment to economic growth. Since a coup was quelled in July, Erdogan has sought popular support to shift from a parliamentary system to an executive presidency to concentrate power in his office.

“Someone is trying to force this country to its knees by economic sabotage after failing to seize it with tanks, guns and F-16s on July 15,” when a coup by a faction within the military failed, Erdogan said at the opening of a shopping mall in Istanbul on Saturday. “This is not a new game and we’re used to it. Especially in the last three years, they are constantly attempting to use economic crisis as a trump card.”

Erdogan, without naming anyone, accused some businessmen and business associations of openly supporting the market speculation, adding that those making most money in Turkey are not in the real economy but in the finance sector, using of money invested in banks by depositors.

Turkey’s Economy Coordination Board met under Prime Minister Binali Yildirim in Ankara on Dec. 2 and decided to “take necessary measures with regards to public finances, banking and the financial sector, the real sector and the labor market, which will be announced to the public” next week, his office said in a statement.

Central Bank Governor Murat Cetinkaya was among top economic policy makers who attended the board meeting, the prime minister’s office said.

“We need to solve the interest question. I know I’m alone, but I will keep fighting. I’m determined,” Erdogan said. “We need to stand up for our economy like we stood up for our future on July 15.”

+++ P.O. (FT) Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s purge becomes a naked power grab


In the FT:

“Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s purge becomes a naked power grab

The president is putting Turkey’s long-term prosperity at risk”

I have said it always:

Recep Tayyip Erdogan is evil.

He brings disgrace on Turkey and on the Turkish people.

He is a dictator of the worst kind.

The only things that he cares about are his own interests.

He should be denounced by all men of good will.

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

+++ O.P./P.O. V.I. (JN) Turquia manda deter 42 jornalistas


…A minha opinião sobre o Senhor Erdogan e o seu regime está publicada há muito tempo.


+++ P.O. and V.I. (FT) EU deal with Turkey looks tawdry

+++ P.O. (TEL) EU Agrees €3 Billion Action Plan With Turkey to Ease Migrant Crisis

+++ M.P.O. and V.I. (FT) Turkey extends clampdown on media

+++ M.P.O. (FT) Turkey election: Erdogan demands respect after historic victory
   É só ir ver.

   Está lá tudo.

   E há quem defenda que este pretenso golpe de estado teria sido organizado por aliados do Senhor Erdogan, para justamente decapitar a Sociedade Turca e assim obter o poder absoluto.

   E agora quer eliminar fisicamente os opositores, com a reintrodução da pena de morte.

   Palavras para quê ?

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(JNUm dos nomes que consta da lista emitida pelas autoridades turcas é o de Nazli Ilicak, uma antiga deputada. Desde a tentativa de golpe de 15 de Julho, as autoridades turcas já detiveram, demitiram ou investigaram mais de 60 mil pessoas.

O gabinete contra o terrorismo e o crime organizado do Procurador-Geral da República da Turquia emitiu um mandado de detenção de 42 jornalistas esta segunda-feira, 25 de Julho, no seguimento das operações desencadeadas desde o golpe de Estado falhado de há uma semana.

Em causa estarão profissionais da comunicação social ligados a meios com ligações a Fethullah Gülen, o teólogo turco exilado nos EUA e apontado por Ancara como estando por detrás da tentativa de golpe de Estado. A lista com os nomes dos detidos está a circular nas redes sociais.

O jornal online Cumhuriyet dava conta, há duas horas, de que cinco das pessoas que constam da lista já estão sob custódia das autoridades: Yakup Saglam, Ibrahim Balta, Seyit Kiliç, Bayram Kaya e Cihan Acar.

De acordo com a estação de televisão privada NTV, entre os nomes constantes do mandado está a de uma comentadora e antiga deputada pelo Partido Democrático, Nazli Ilicak, que ainda não terá sido localizada pela polícia. Um outro jornalista, Fatih Yagmur, fez saber da sua detenção pelo Twitter.

Desde a tentativa de golpe de 15 de Julho, as autoridades turcas já visaram mais de 60 mil pessoas, entre militares, elementos das forças policiais, juízes, funcionários públicos e professores nas suas operações, entre suspensões, detenções ou investigação, avança a agência Reuters.

Segundo a agência EFE, no ano passado as autoridades turcas mudaram a administração e despediram parte do pessoal de meios de comunicação social alegadamente de linha gulenista (ligadas a Fethullah Gülen), como os jornais Zaman, Bugün ou Millet. Depois da intervenção estatal, os responsáveis por estes jornais criaram novos meios, como o Özgür Düsunce, onde trabalha Nazli Ilicak.

+++ P.O. (BBG) Isolated Erdogan Heals Israel, Russia Ties to Boost Economy


Mr Erdogan is a person you don’t want to have to deal with.

Please revisit my Personal Opinions on Mr Erdogan and Turkey,

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(BBG) President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ended a six-year rift with Israel and unexpectedly moved to mend ties with Russia, as Turkey attempts to draw a line under diplomatic confrontations that had sapped its economy and left it increasingly isolated in the region.

Erdogan sent a letter to President Vladimir Putin regretting the shooting down of a Russian combat plane in November, an incident that plunged ties between the two countries into crisis. News of the reconciliation effort came hours after Turkey and Israel on Monday agreed to repair relations damaged by a deadly maritime clash in 2010 between Israeli commandos and pro-Palestinian Turkish activists. Turkey formally signed the deal with Israel on Tuesday, according to AHaber television.

The feuds that Turkey set out to end had become intertwined. Talks with gas-rich Israel gained momentum after Turkey downed the Russian jet and Ankara sought to cut its reliance on Russian fuel. In addition to the economic benefits, the twin-track rapprochement may bolster the Turkish government, which has found itself increasingly sidelined amid attempts to end regional conflicts, especially in Syria where Moscow is now the dominant international player.

“We are taking steps to end the crisis and economic cooperation will follow,” Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told state-run TRT television in an interview late Monday, adding that Erdogan and Putin may speak by phone this week. “We will pretend the last six months never happened and keep going.”

Investors Cheer

Russia and Turkey will resume investments and cooperation in tourism, said Yildirim.

Investors cheered both steps, which pave the way for Israeli gas imports and the lifting of Russian economic sanctions that have been especially damaging for Turkey’s tourism industry. The number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey fell 92 percent in May compared to a year ago, according to official data published Tuesday.

The shares of Israeli and Turkish energy companies advanced on Monday. Turkish Airlines, the nation’s flagship carrier, rose 3.9 percent, regaining some ground from a 20-percent drop this year as Russian trade curbs and a series of attacks by Islamic State militants in Ankara and Istanbul weighed on business.

“Two big foreign policy openings were implemented on a single day,” said Ozdem Sanberk, a former ambassador to London and Brussels and currently the president of International Strategic Research Organization, an Ankara think-tank. “The same incentive is valid for Turkey in both cases: Turkey wants to stop being alone.”

Erdogan’s tough approach toward Israel after the 2010 fall-out won him plaudits in much of the Muslim world. From Egypt to Algeria, the Turkish leader received a hero’s welcome wherever he traveled, but those days are long gone.

A demonstration outside the Turkish embassy in Moscow in November 2015. Several hundred young activists on Wednesday hurled stones and eggs as Turkey's embassy in Moscow and brandished anti-Turkish placards after Ankara downed a Russian warplane on the Syrian border.
A demonstration outside the Turkish embassy in Moscow in November 2015. Several hundred young activists on Wednesday hurled stones and eggs as Turkey’s embassy in Moscow and brandished anti-Turkish placards after Ankara downed a Russian warplane on the Syrian border.
Photographer: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty Images

His close ally, Mohamed Mursi, was removed from power in Egypt by the military in 2013, and Erdogan saw his foreign policy hit a dead-end in Syria. There, President Bashar al-Assad with Russian military support has taken the upper hand in the country’s civil war, pushing the rebel groups Turkey backs onto the defensive.

Turkey is ready to develop economic ties with Egypt despite its opposition to Mursi’s ouster, Yildirim said.

“There is no obstacle to developing economic relations,” he said. “Our businessmen and investors can pay mutual visits and prepare the ground for normalization. Even visits at the ministerial level may start. We are ready for this without any reservations.”

Kurdish Conflict

Turkey is also fighting autonomy-seeking Kurdish militants after a three-year lull, and the economy has been stretched by the arrival of nearly 3 million refugees fleeing violence in Iraq and Syria.

Trade between Russia and Turkey, which had topped $30 billion annually, plunged after the jet downing. Putin called the attack a “treacherous stab in the back” of Russian forces bombing Islamic State and other militants in Syria and demanded an apology.

The two countries differed in their interpretation of the letter from Erdogan.

“The head of the Turkish state expressed his sympathy and deep condolences to the family of the Russian pilot who was killed, and he said sorry,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call Monday. A statement from the Turkish presidential office didn’t refer to Erdogan’s remarks as an apology, while saying that Turkey and Russia agreed to take necessary steps without delay to improve bilateral relations. It cited Erdogan as saying to the family of the Russian pilot that “I share their pain and offer my condolences to them. May they excuse us.”

Gas Exports

“Apology or not, Turkey relayed its regrets and Russians took it as an apology. The step that Russia was waiting for was taken,” Sanberk said. “The first thing Russia will expect from Turkey is a change in its Syrian policy,” he said. “Russia wants to be a main play-maker in the Middle East along with the U.S. Turkish Russian ties will improve to the extent Turkey doesn’t stand in the way of Russian demands.”

Turkey is ready to pay compensation for the death of the Russian pilot if needed, Yildirim said.

Turkey was once Israel’s closest Muslim ally, their partnership based on strong military and economic ties. Relations began to fray after Erdogan took power in Turkey in 2003 at the head of an Islamist-oriented government, and his rancorous criticism of Israel’s 2008 Gaza Strip incursion created serious strains.

Diplomatic ties were severed after the 2010 confrontation at sea, which led to the deaths of 10 Turks. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized at the urging of visiting President Barack Obama in 2013, but that didn’t blossom into reconciliation. It took Turkey’s confrontation with Russia to turn the tide.

+++ P.O./V.V.I. (FT) Recep Tayyip Erdogan seeks limitless power


Please revisit my various P.O. on Mr Erdogan:



+++ P.O. and V.I. (FT) EU deal with Turkey looks tawdry

+++ P.O. (TEL) EU Agrees €3 Billion Action Plan With Turkey to Ease Migrant Crisis

+++ M.P.O. and V.I. (FT) Turkey extends clampdown on media

+++ M.P.O. (FT) Turkey election: Erdogan demands respect after historic victory

(FT) President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last week pushed out Ahmet Davutoglu, the prime minister he himself had handpicked, seemingly to clear his way towards the untrammelled one-man rule he has sought since he moved from the premiership to Turkey’s presidency two years ago. Conventional wisdom says Mr Erdogan is surrounding himself with loyalists. But the man he has just defenestrated is a loyalist. He joins a long list of those jettisoned from the president’s inner circle over the past two years, in a processional purge that is starting to look like standard political procedure.

The ruling Justice and Development party (AKP), a conservative coalition with roots in political Islam, came to power in 2002 as cautious and wary outsiders. They scarcely had a toehold in a secular state built by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk from the rubble of the Ottoman Empire. Initially, they relied on the shadowy Islamist movement headed by Fethullah Gulen, a US-based imam, which over three decades had inserted its cadres into the judiciary, the police and then the intelligence services.

Over time, and swept forward by Mr Erdogan’s electoral triumphs, the new AKP establishment supplanted the old secular elites. With the help of the Gulenists, and by fair means or foul, it elbowed aside generals and judges who, as late as 2008, were trying to get the AKP banned. All this helps explain why, even now, the AKP often behaves more like an opposition than Turkey’s paramount party.

This paranoia grew exponentially after the mid-2013 demonstrations nationwide against Mr Erdogan’s intrusive and increasingly authoritarian rule. After the Gulen network launched corruption probes into the Erdogan inner circle later that year, the then prime minister treated the crisis as existential, shutting down the investigation and launching a purge of Gulenists that continues today.

It is also something of a paradox that Mr Erdogan has cocooned himself among courtiers. He had, after all, created a genuine mass movement, widely seen at the time as a Muslim analogue to European-style Christian democracy. Before first winning power in October 2002, the AKP spent 22 months interviewing in depth 42,000 people across the country. By 2013, it became clear that the feedback loop of this well-oiled political machine had been short-circuited by sycophants.

Mr Erdogan evidently feels more comfortable surrounded by ciphers. At the time of the 2013 turmoil, Abdullah Gul, then president, a co-founder of the AKP and a more emollient foil to Mr Erdogan’s abrasive personality, assured Turks that “the messages with good intentions [from the protests] were received”. Mr Erdogan growled: “What message?”

The popular Mr Gul was an immediate casualty. After Mr Erdogan was elected president, he scheduled the AKP congress to elect his successor as party leader and premier just before Mr Gul left office — disqualifying him constitutionally as a runner because he was still in the presidency, a non-partisan, largely ceremonial post before Mr Erdogan took it. Other loyalists followed Mr Gul into political limbo: Bulent Arinc, the third co-founder of the AKP; Huseyin Celik, Mr Erdogan’s party deputy and propagandist; as well as economic tsar Ali Babacan. And now Mr Davutoglu.

Various behind-closed-door differences have been adduced by Turkish analysts to explain the prime minister’s fall. The president and his premier disagreed on: the independence of the central bank and state guarantees for favoured contractors; negotiations with Kurdish insurgents and the jailing of journalists and academics; the deal Mr Davutoglu struck with the EU on Syrian refugees; and so on.

But one reason counts above all, signalled for weeks by the “Erdoganist” faction that is replacing the old guard loyalists: as Mr Erdogan moves towards an all-powerful executive presidency, there is no room for a rival centre of power, however flimsy.

What is remarkable, though, is the manner in which Mr Erdogan’s former comrades have all gone with scarcely a murmur, indeed singing the praises of the leader. Sealed off in his neo-Ottoman palace in Ankara, four times the size of Versailles, and wilfully cut off from any free flow of critical information or pushback, it is hardly surprising he feels no limits to his power.

AKP barons such as Mr Celik used to complain that the Kemalist elite behaved as landlords of the state, treating the elected government as their highly evictable tenants. Now that President Erdogan behaves as the landowner of the country with almost patrimonial entitlement, it seems they have nothing to say at all.



+++ P.O./V.V.I. (FT) Berlin rebuffs Turkish protest over Erdogan satire


Merkel 10 – Erdogan 0!

I never trusted Mr Erdogan.

And in my opinion, Mr Erdogan should not to be trusted at all.

And he was rightly snubbed by President Obama, that sent the Vice President Joe Binden to meet him in Washington.

Mr Erdogan is one of these leaders that the World could do away with.

He has no respect for human rights at all.

I wrote a long time ago, that I would not meet Mr Erdogan even if he promised to return to us my Grand Mother’s Estates in Smyrna (modern Izmir).

On the other hand I would be delighted to meet Mr Fethullah Gulen who is exiled in the U.S.

(My Grand Mother was Jewish and had a Greek Passport. She left, never to return after the Turkish invasion of the 9th September 1922).
Please see the attachment

So, in my opinion, Mrs Merkel did very well in rebuffing Mr Erdogan.

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(FT) Berlin has rebuffed Turkey’s protest about a satirical song targeting the country’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan which aired on German television earlier this month, as the affair threatened to open new fault-lines between Turkey and the EU.

Markus Ederer, state secretary at the German foreign ministry, called his Turkish counterpart to say that freedom of speech was “non-negotiable”, a ministry spokeswoman said.

She was speaking after Turkey summoned Martin Erdmann, the German ambassador, twice in the space of a week, once to demand that the song about Mr Erdogan be removed from the internet and once to complain about his presence at the trial of two journalists facing espionage charges for documenting covert Turkish arms shipments to Syria.

The song, entitled “Erdowi, Erdowo, Erdogan”, was aired on Germany’s ARD television channel on March 17. In it, Mr Erdogan is depicted as a dictator who locks up journalists, bombs Kurds and builds huge palaces for himself. It is accompanied by footage of Turkish police using tear gas and water cannon against demonstrators.

The affair has created tensions between the EU and Turkey at a time when they are trying to implement a landmark deal to solve the refugee crisis. Brussels promised to pay Ankara more than €6bn and lift visa restrictions for Turks in exchange for an agreement to take in migrants sent back from Greece.

Mina Andreeva, a spokeswoman for Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission president, said that while Brussels continues to value its co-operation with Ankara, the decision to summon the German ambassador over the video “does not seem to be in line” with European free press and free expression norms.

“President Juncker does not appreciate this movement of calling in the German ambassador just because of a satirical song,” said Ms Andreeva. “He believes that this moves Turkey further from the EU rather than closer to us.”

Mr Erdogan has also lashed out at diplomats who attended the trial of the two Turkish journalists, Can Dundar, editor of Cumhuriyet, and Erdem Gul, the paper’s Ankara bureau chief.

On Monday, a US official defended the decision to send diplomats to the trial. “This was not the first time, but it darn sure won’t be the last time that we observe these kinds of judicial proceedings,” said John Kirby, the State Department spokesman.

Many observers were left puzzled by Mr Erdogan’s latest interventions. “Perhaps he thinks that the [refugee deal with the EU] will not work, especially the part on visa liberalisation, so he’s applying pressure on the EU to meet its commitments,” one European diplomat said. “Either that, or this is part of a strategy ahead of a referendum [on a new constitution] or snap elections, where he’s using the EU as a whipping boy for his own political aims.”

On Wednesday, Mr Erdogan arrived in Washington to attend a nuclear security summit alongside Barack Obama and other world leaders. As the visit got under way, his supporters created a new hashtag, #WeLoveErdogan, which soon began trending on Twitter. “The hope of the oppressed, the Grand Master of our country’s structural transformation and rebirth,” wrote Mehmet Simsek, the deputy prime minister, next to a picture of Mr Erdogan.

On Wednesday, Turkey’s justice minister Bekir Bozdag accused Twitter of censoring the new hashtag, which disappeared from the platform’s trending list. “Who instructed you to remove the #WeLoveErdogan hashtag? Was it a country, a person, a terrorist group, or somebody else?” said Mr. Bozdag. “I believe this is a part of a global operation against our president.”dfgbhu

+++ M.P.O. (FT) Turkey election: Erdogan demands respect after historic victory


As far as I am concerned, I have to say that someone who does not respect human rights, treats opponents as ennemies, closes their TV stations and newspapers, and allegedly bombs them, does not, cannot and will not command any kind of respect.

Please see +++ M.P.O. and V.I. (FT) Turkey extends clampdown on media, published on October 18, 2015.

Adversus solem ne loquitor

Quoting the Latin Language Blog:

“Literally means, “do not speak against the sun. It’s used when someone is arguing or advocating something that is obviously and blatantly wrong. Since the sun is guaranteed to exist forever (assuming that a geologic catastrophe doesn’t occur), the proverb is saying that one shouldn’t argue against something that is so likely as the sun’s existence.”
Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira



(FT) The day after his AK party won nearly half of the country’s votes and clinched a parliamentary majority pollsters had not foreseen, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had a message for the world: learn some respect — this is democracy, Turkish style.

“Why don’t they respect the national will?” Mr Erdogan asked journalists on Monday, bracketing internal critics and international opinion. “They haven’t displayed respect since the day [in August last year] when the national will elected Erdogan as president with 52 per cent . . . One should ask, ‘Is this your understanding of democracy?’”

The Turkish president continued: “The entire world needs to respect this — I haven’t seen very much of such respect in the world.”

Mr Erdogan’s response gives a strong indication of how he intends to conduct his next few years in office.

After winning a high stakes gamble to secure the majority that eluded the AKP in an election just five months before, he has little time for allegations that he has clamped down on democratic freedoms. Now, more than ever, Turkey’s future is in the hands of one man and he has made his enemies clear.

He also wants Turkey’s stance to be taken more into account in the country’s troubled region — notably in the civil war raging in neighbouring Syria — and in the world.

The AKP victory is seen as a vindication of his political style. What critics describe as authoritarianism, voters see as strength in uncertain times, and what liberals and minorities decry as polarisation, Mr Erdogan’s supporters depict as a welcome return to traditional Turkish values.

At times over the past two years, Mr Erdogan’s personalised style of government appeared to cost the AKP support. But the tough line he took towards adversaries in recent months appeared to boost his party as it advanced 9 percentage points from the previous poll in June.

The election did leave a final task unfinished — the official transformation of the role of president to a muscular, executive office Mr Erdogan has described as a “Turkish-style presidency.”

To effect such a change, he would have needed the AKP to win 330 seats and pass constitutional reforms he could then present to the Turkish citizens for a referendum.

In the event, the party secured 317 seats. Mr Erdogan himself says that Turkey already has a de facto presidential system, but he could still seek to co-opt opposition members of parliament to bring about constitutional changes.

“This presidential system for him is the real goal. In a way, the electioneering is still going on in the background,” says Naz Masraff, at the Eurasia Group, a risk consultancy. “So for him, it’s not four years free of elections, it is another important vote that will be coming up soon.”

Hours after the victory, Mr Erdogan’s chief economic adviser, Yigit Bulut, claimed that if Turkey did indeed give the leader the presidential system he wants, the stock market would soar to undreamt of highs and the economy would triple in size.

“Welcome, Presidency, welcome the new, great, strong, fully independent great Turkey,” Mr Bulut wrote in the pro-government Star newspaper.

Before that, though, Mr Erdogan has a long list of enemies to vanquish. Among them are the devotees of Fethullah Gulen, a US-based imam and former ally, whose followers Mr Erdogan has labelled as terrorists; enfeebled opposition media groups; and Kurdish militants with whom he has had on-again, off-again peace talks.

One adversary, the Dogan Group, a conglomerate that has interests in media, finance and energy, closed down 13 per cent on Monday. Mr Erdogan has frequently attacked Aydin Dogan, the group’s patriarch, while an AKP member of parliament led a violent mob against the group’s flagship Hurriyet paper two months ago.

Another group, Koza-Ipek, whose owner is close to Mr Gulen, lost control of its media outlets last week after they were stormed by police because of the links with the exiled preacher.

Such uses of police and executive power have caused many foreign leaders to recoil from Mr Erdogan in recent years. But, faced with the crisis in Syria, the rise of Isis and the flood of refugees passing through Turkey, many have concluded that there is no alternative to dealing with the undisputed strongman of Turkish politics.

“US policy issues with Turkey could be more manageable under this single party AKP government,” said Ross Wilson, a former US ambassador to Ankara now at the Atlantic Council, who highlights the virtues of continuity and experience. But he adds that the polarisation of the country — which seems set to intensify with Sunday’s result — is “certainly an obvious problem”.Turkey-election-Erdogan-demands-respect-after-historic-victory-

+++ M.P.O. and V.I. (FT) Turkey extends clampdown on media


On October 18, 2015 I wrote +++ P.O. and V.I. (FT) EU deal with Turkey looks tawdry:



I quote the last paragraph of this superb FT article by David Gardner:

“Maybe Mr Erdogan is right, and the EU is not really a rules-based organisation upholding liberal values – since it treats him as a statesman, rather than the increasingly factional authoritarian he has become, when it suits its interests.”



And on October 5, 2015, I said in this M.P.O. and V.V.I. (FT) EU woos Erdogan in effort to stem migration, that Mr. Erdogan was blackmailing the EU:



Mr Erdogan and his government are, in my opinion, as detestable as it gets.

I must haven written more than twenty personal opinions on Mr Erdogan, and I can assure you that there nothing, absolutely nothing, I like about Mr Erdogan, his government and his policies.

Having said this, I think Mr Erdogan is blackmailing the EU, with the migrants.

He is also trying to regain the center stage, after having lost the elections.

And on top of this, I don´t think that Mr Erdogan can be trusted, in this matter, and others.

And with blackmailers the number one rule is…

One never gives in, come what may.

Imagine what would happen if the EU would start shaping it’s policies on other countries demands…

Good luck to the EU’s negotiations, but I think this path leads nowhere.


adjective: detestable

deserving intense dislike.
“I found the film’s violence detestable”

synonyms: abhorrent, detested, hateful, hated, loathsome, loathed, despicable, despised, abominable, abominated, execrable, execrated, repellent, repugnant, repulsive, revolting, disgusting, distasteful, horrible, horrid, horrifying, awful, heinous, reprehensible, obnoxious, odious, nauseating, offensive, contemptible
“such behaviour is detestable and despicable”»



Please see also the superb FT article What is the Europe migrant crisis and how has it evolved (published October 4, 2015)


 +++ P.O. (TEL) EU Agrees €3 Billion Action Plan With Turkey to Ease Migrant Crisis (published  October 16, 2015)


+++ V.I. (FT) Angela Merkel stands by refugees decision despite polls (published October 4, 2015)


+++ (FT) Migrant crisis explained in numbers  (published October 4, 2015



And this MAJOR P.O. ON MR ERDOGAN AND TURKEY, originally published on December 26, 2013.





(FT) Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has extended his crackdown on the country’s media, with police in Ankara using tear gas on crowds outside the offices of holding company, Koza Ipek, whose television and newspapers have been critical of the government.

The move comes five days before a national election in which Mr Erdogan is seeking a parliamentary majority for his Justice and Development party (AKP).

Government-picked trustees were installed at the holding company and a prosecutor is seeking evidence tying its proprietor to Fethullah Gulen, a preacher based in the US who has been a target of Mr Erdogan’s for several years.

The group’s media outlets include the KanalTurk television channel and the Millet and Bugun newspapers, which ran matching black front pages on Tuesday.

“Our companies have been audited for the last two years, and nothing has been found,” said Bilal Calisir, a lawyer for Koza Ipek. He said the actions were designed to silence the company’s media properties. “The legal expert report said they couldn’t find anything, that everything was too perfect for the law of nature.”

Media groups critical of the government have been under growing pressure in Turkey, facing large tax fines, physical attacks on their journalists and offices and condemnation from senior politicians.

The Dogan Group, which owns the Hurriyet newspaper, faced a $3.3bn fine in 2009, and sold two of its other newspapers in 2011, for instance.

Turkey ranks below Myanmar and Zimbabwe in the World Press Freedom Index, at 149, far below its European peers. The Bugun newspaper was first raided in September after it ran a front-page story accusing the Turkish government of helping Isis militants in Syria, an accusation that has raised the government’s ire in the past when other news organisations reported on the subject.

“The operation to seize the Turkish media’s free and independent segments has taken a new dimension, which is now even more worrisome than before,” said Yavuz Baydar, a founding member of Platform24, a non-profit organisation that aims to support independent journalism. “After the seizure of Ipek, there is no media outlet except for Dogan that can comment freely and independently — it is a power grab that attempts to take complete control over journalism in Turkey.”

The Ankara courts, which issued the order for the trusteeship, declined to comment, and emails to the interior ministry were unanswered. A government spokesman did not respond to calls and texts seeking comment. A spokesman for Gulen described the actions as a “vicious witch-hunt against anyone who stands up to his authoritarianism”.

The chairman of the holding group Hamdi Akin Ipek made a public statement written in verse, accusing the prosecutor in charge of the investigation of sending police into his children’s rooms to search for evidence, and of undue secrecy in their actions.

At the Bugun newspaper, confusion reigned, said Emrah Ulker, the foreign editor. “We have not received any official notice, we haven’t even seen the letter of the prosecutor so we can’t be sure what the grounds are,” he said, describing the new trustees as either party loyalists or pro-government media executives. “This is completely political.”Turkey-extends-clampdown-on-media-FT

+++ P.O. and V.I. (FT) EU deal with Turkey looks tawdry


I quote the last paragraph of this superb FT article by David Gardner:

“Maybe Mr Erdogan is right, and the EU is not really a rules-based organisation upholding liberal values – since it treats him as a statesman, rather than the increasingly factional authoritarian he has become, when it suits its interests.”

On October 5, 2015 I wrote +++ M.P.O. and V.V.I. (FT) EU woos Erdogan in effort to stem migration:


Mr Erdogan and his government are, in my opinion, as detestable as it gets.

I must haven written more than twenty personal opinions on Mr Erdogan, and I can assure you that there nothing, absolutely nothing, I like about Mr Erdogan, his government and his policies.

Having said this, I think Mr Erdogan is blackmailing the EU, with the migrants.

He is also trying to regain the center stage, after having lost the elections.

And on top of this, I don´t think that Mr Erdogan can be trusted, in this matter, and others.

And with blackmailers the number one rule is…

One never gives in, come what may.

Imagine what would happen if the EU would start shaping it’s policies on other countries demands…

Good luck to the EU’s negotiations, but I think this path leads nowhere.


adjective: detestable

deserving intense dislike.
“I found the film’s violence detestable”

synonyms: abhorrent, detested, hateful, hated, loathsome, loathed, despicable, despised, abominable, abominated, execrable, execrated, repellent, repugnant, repulsive, revolting, disgusting, distasteful, horrible, horrid, horrifying, awful, heinous, reprehensible, obnoxious, odious, nauseating, offensive, contemptible
“such behaviour is detestable and despicable”

Please see the superb FT article “What is the Europe migrant crisis and how has it evolved?, published October 4, 2015 (click to see)


+++ V.I. (FT) Angela Merkel stands by refugees decision despite polls (published October 4, 2015 – click to see)


+++ (FT) Migrant crisis explained in numbers  (published October 4, 2015 – click to see)

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira»

And on October 16, 2015 I wrote +++ P.O. (TEL) EU Agrees €3 Billion Action Plan With Turkey to Ease Migrant Crisis:


On October 5, 2015, I said in this M.P.O. and V.V.I. (FT) EU woos Erdogan in effort to stem migration (click to see), that Mr. Erdogan was blackmailing the EU.

Do you still have any doubts…?»

And this MAJOR P.O. ON MR ERDOGAN AND TURKEY (Click to see)originally published on December 26, 2013.


I need to say no more.

I rest my case.


Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira



(FT) The EU package for Turkey agreed at thelatest Brussels summit on the refugee crisis looks pretty desperate. The situation ofSyrian refugees, the bulk of those braving death to try to make their way to Europe, is very desperate. Syria’s neighbours, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, which together have taken in more than 5m refugees, once the unofficial tally is added to those registered by the UN, know that very well.

Now, the EU is offering Turkey three main things to get it to prevent Syrians transiting to Europe and keep them inside its borders. Stalled EU accession negotiations will be re-energised. Talks will start on liberalising EU visa rules for Turks. And Ankara will be offered something like €3bn in aid for refugees (about half the sum it has already spent) and border control.blogs.ft_


[This article was originally published on December 26, 2013]


I Francisco, declare for The Record that, even if invited,  I would never, ever, even have a coffee with Mr. Erdogan.

Even if Mr. Erdogan were to promise to return my Mother’s Mother vast estates in
Esmirna, Izmir or Smyna, (my Grand Mother was born there), I would still decline the invitation. [Esmirna from Greek means Mirra in Portuguese]

My Grand Mother and my Mother had no brothers or sisters ,so, it is not very hard to figure who they belong to…

On the other hand, it would be an Honor to have coffee, lunch or dinner, with Mr. Fethullah Gulen, and I would not ask for anything.

What is going on in Turkey, is, among other things, a conflict between Mr. Erdogan ad Mr. Gulen, who lives in Pennsylvania, USA.

Mr. Gulen advocates education in Science, interfaith dialogue among the People of The Book and multi-party democracy.

He condemns violence, was the first Leader in Islam to condemn the 9/11 attacks, and has has personally met with Leaders of other Religions and started a dialogue, including Pope John Paul II, the Greek Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomeus and Israeli Sephardic Head Rabbi Eliyahu Bakshi-Doron, and even with atheists (Dialogue Society).

You can see, in the attachment, Mr. Gulen holding hands with Pope John Paul II.

Mr. Gulen will always be welcome at My House.

Mr. Erdogan‘s destiny has been sealed. Out.

If it is now or later, I have no idea.
It is public information (Bloomberg) that there are dozens of more  scandals involving Mr. Erdogan, to be released.

Mr. Erdogan does not stand a chance.

“Les Jeux sont Faits”.


Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira


December the 26 th 2013 (Gregorian Calendar).