Turkish opposition leader: Threat by president is awful

Akşener has slammed Erdoğan for his words praising people who were involved in a brawl with her bodyguards. (Photo: Twitter)

Turkish opposition İYİ Party (Good Party) leader Meral Akşener reacted strongly to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s remark, which she called a “threat.”

“It is awful to be threatened by the president,” said Akşener in a live interview on private broadcaster Fox TV early on May 28.

The fresh row between Erdoğan and Akşener began after the latter’s May 20 visit to the Black Sea province of Rize, the president’s hometown, where she backed villagers who protest the construction of a quarry in a valley, İkizdere.

A pro-government group protested Akşener in Rize, involving a physical brawl. Akşener named the incident a provocation, adding that she was embraced in Rize.

Erdoğan said during a weekly address to his party lawmakers on May 26 that “Mrs. Bride put my name near Netanyahu and then she went to Rize. There, they taught her a good lesson. You should thank God that they taught it without going too far. They did what they needed to do there. See what will happen in the future. These are your good days” Erdoğan said.

Akşener had compared Erdoğan’s administration stye to Israel leader Benjamin Netanyahu, implying that it is a “Sultan-like” rule similar to Donald Trump of the U.S., Vladimir Putin of Russia or Viktor Orban of Hungary.

In the May 28 interview, Akşener said she did not guess Erdoğan would distort her words that much, adding that Netanyahu’s rule was “awful.” 

She said she had no trouble with being called “Mrs Bride”,adding that she was proud to be married to a man from Rize, but complaining that Erdoğan’s wording aimed at humiliating her.

Other opposition parties lend support to Erdoğan, criticizing Erdoğan for his rhetoric. 

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