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Erdogan mum as mob boss threatens Turkey’s fundamental opposition chief

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Nov 18, 2020 Turkey’s fundamental opposition chief, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, pressed fees with the Istanbul chief prosecutor’s workplace towards a infamous Turkish mafia boss Nov. 18 after he brazenly threatened him in a letter he shared through Twitter triggering uproar. Kilicdaroglu’s lawyer stated the four-page diatribe handwritten and signed by Alaattin Cakici posed a direct menace to his shopper, who’s the chief of the pro-secular Republican People’s Party (CHP). In the letter, dated Nov. 17 and peppered with obscenities and threats of bodily violence, Cakici accused Kilicdaroglu of treason in live performance with Kurdish militants and international powers. “Be sensible,” he warned, utilizing an expression that’s generally utilized by Turkish gangsters to intimidate their victims. Cakici’s ire was sparked by Kilicdaroglu’s suggestion in a speech to the parliament the identical day that the mobster had been just lately free of jail due to stress on Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan from his far-right nationalist associate Devlet Bahceli, whereas 1000’s of prisoners of conscience proceed to rot in Turkish jails. Cakici boasts of his shut ties to Bahceli: The nationalist chief visited Cakici when he fell unwell in jail in 2018 and met with him following his launch in April this yr underneath a controversial amnesty legislation that was pushed by his Nationalist Action Party (MHP). Bahceli took to Twitter to defend Cakici towards Kilicdaroglu’s “collaborators” who he claimed have been making an attempt to smear him, saying that he and the mob chief believed in the identical trigger His threats towards Kilicdaroglu have been greeted with silence by Erdogan and members of his ruling Justice and Development Party. Their obvious indifference flies within the face of Erdogan’s current pledges, which have been echoed by his justice minister, for sweeping financial and judicial reforms that are supposed to restore investor confidence in Turkey’s battered economic system. “The optimists who wanted to give Erdogan the benefit of the doubt following his promise of legal reform must now realize that this was yet another empty promise of his,” famous Aykan Erdemir, a former CHP parliamentarian who heads the Turkey program on the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a Washington-based suppose tank. “Turkish authorities continue to prosecute legitimate expressions of dissent while offering impunity to threats hurled by mob bosses and vigilantes. The Erdogan government is too intimately involved with a long list of criminal and corrupt figures to be able to afford even the semblance of rule of law and due process,” he added in emailed feedback to Al-Monitor. Cakici, whose rap sheet contains operating armed gangs and ordering the homicide of his ex-wife on a Turkish ski slope, has dominated Turkey’s underworld for the higher a part of 4 many years. He can also be related to the Gray Wolves, the ultranationalist outfit that operated because the MHP’s youth arm in avenue battles with leftists within the 1970s that left 1000’s useless. It was just lately banned in France for its violent assaults towards ethnic Armenians there. Cakici was jailed after the 1980 navy coup over his position within the murders of 41 leftists. His most up-to-date spell behind bars for the homicide of his ex-wife, whose father was additionally a infamous mobster, started in 2004 when he was caught in Austria carrying a particular service passport underneath the title of a former intelligence chief. Turkish officers have confirmed that Cakici — working underneath the code title “Atilla” — was utilized by the state for hit jobs towards its international home enemies. These included Armenian militants who assassinated not less than 36 Turkish diplomats between 1974 and 1991, in addition to Kurds. While the state’s relations with underworld figures like Cakici are dressed up as patriotism, they’ve benefited a succession of rogue members of the safety equipment concerned within the medication and weapons commerce. Erdogan got here to energy in 2002 vowing to eradicate the so-called deep state however has ended up in league with it, critics say. Erdogan’s alliance with Bahceli, struck up within the wake of the failed 2016 coup, has clearly emboldened the likes of Cakici, who has taken potshots on the Turkish president as effectively. Ryan Gingeras, creator of “Heroin, Organized Crime and the Making of Modern Turkey” and professor of nationwide safety affairs on the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, stated, “I think it is safe to assume Cakici does believe he can get away with threatening Kilicdaroglu because of his ties to MHP and weakness of the justice system.” In emailed feedback to Al-Monitor, he added, “One may also say it’s a product of ‘celebrity license.’ This is who he is and it’s precisely why he’s famous. So yes, it again affirms that the Turkish criminal justice system is choosey when it comes to who is prosecuted for clear infractions. It demonstrates the power of the Turkish right and the continued relevance of right-wing toughs in contemporary history.” But it might not be all plain crusing for Cakici. An Istanbul courtroom slapped him final month with 17 years for a catalog of crimes together with the tried homicide of a relative. An appeals courtroom may have the last say on the case.

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