What’s behind AKP’s allegations of Gulen-PKK ties?

Irfan Aktan/Timur Göksel,
Al Monitor.

Turkey’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, which stepped up operations against the Fethullah Gulen movement after the July 15 coup attempt, is now accusing Gulenists of being responsible for many unpleasant events from the recent past. Pro-government media is working overtime to charge Gulenists with many nefarious deeds, including the killing of 34 Kurdish villagers by the Turkish air force near Roboski village on Dec. 28, 2011, the assassination of Armenian journalist Hrant Dink and even the shooting down of a Russian warplane last year.Interestingly, it was AKP officials who blocked finding those responsible for the Roboski massacre, promoted those who were implicated in Dink’s murder and applauded the shooting down of the Russian plane with glee.

A supporter of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan steps on a photo of U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen during a pro-government demonstration on Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 18, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis - RTSILD2The opposition is aware of the game and is reacting sharply to the AKP’s efforts to cleanse its past by holding Gulenists responsible for the above incidents and others. Peoples’ Democratic Party chairman Selahattin Demirtas, who was the only party leader not invited to the mass rally Aug. 6 in Istanbul, said it best with this sarcastic comment: “Without a letter of recommendation from the [Gulen] movement, someone wasn’t even allowed to become a class president in school.”

The AKP’s repositioning of the blame has reached preposterous levels.

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