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Anasayfa BİRGÜN DAILY Yenikapı rally: highlights of speeches delivered by attending leaders

Yenikapı rally: highlights of speeches delivered by attending leaders

Yenikapı rally: highlights of speeches delivered by attending leaders

As the impact of the failed July 15 coup attempt continues to be felt all throughout Turkey, millions gathered in Yenikapı yesterday, on August 7th, with the call of President Erdoğan, in order to ‘crown’ the Democracy Duty Meetings that have been taking place in city centers since the day of the attempt. Erdoğan invited opposition leaders Bahçeli and Kılıçdaroğlu, leaving out HDP Co-chairs. Though Kılıçdaroğlu had initially rejected the invitation as the Chair of CHP and announced that CHP were to send a delegation instead, Erdoğan and AKP officials insisted on his attendance, eventually leading to the decision of CHP for Kılıçdaroğlu to attend.

Yesterday’s meeting is widely considered a milestone event since it brought together majority of the representatives within the parliament and all state institutions, though leaving out certain parties and groups. The meeting started off with the brief speech of Orçun Şekercioğlu, who is a civilian that got wounded during the coup attempt at the Bosporus bridge. Following that, MHP Chair Bahçeli, CHP Chair Kılıçdaroğlu, PM Yıldırım, Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar and President Erdoğan also came on stage to deliver their speeches.

The common message of all leaders were with regards to the severity and unprecedented nature of the coup attempt perpetrated by FETÖ; the people’s and politicians’ unity against it; and the need to continue on this unity. On the other hand, there was also a different emphasis expressed by each leader.


MHP Chair Devlet Bahçeli: ‘Wise-looking FETÖ has targetted the heart of Turkey’

Coming on stage as the first party leader to speak, MHP Chair Devlet Bahçeli greeted the crowds with praise and appreciation for their bravery in fighting and standing against the coup plotters. Often giving examples from the past, Bahçeli defined July 15 as a major milestone in country’s history and likened to other critical turning-points. Bahçeli’s condemnation of the coup attempt and its plotters and supporters, as well as, his emphasis on the need to ensure practising of rule of law in judging and punishing the perpetrators were among the highlights of his speech.

Parts of Bahçeli’s remarks are as the following:

“…I greet all of Turkey with longing and I extend my love and appreciation to all of you. You have stood up straight and rised our flag with honor. You have embraced our martyrs heartfully and you have defended unity with faith. You have taught a lesson to traitors without hesitation and you have brought them into line… I’m happy because volition is here; nation is here; faith is here…

…On 15 May 1919, İzmir had been invaded; on March 16, İstanbul had. You should know that July 15 was a new attempt of invasion; a new attempt of slaughter and destruction. The saying that goes as ‘water would sleep but enemy would never’ now gains meaning once again. The cruels, traitors, and emperialists’ tools have this time appeared in soldier outfits. They have turned over the weapons of the nation against the nation. A wise-looking terrorist gave the order through his damnation. He has broken all records with his enmity towards Turks and Turkey. FETÖ has targetted the heart of Turkey…

…July 15 is a new attempt of those that were defeated in Kosova 627 years ago; it is a new appraisal of those who were suppressed in Niğbolu 620 years ago; it is a counter-operation of those that we have thought of as drown in the blood they had shed 572 years ago in Varna, 563 ago in İstanbul, and 490 years ago in Mohaç.

Those who bombed the Grand National Assembly, the security forces, and the intelligence services and killed our civilian and innocent citizens are on the same path as those who had come to the coasts of Dardanelles 101 years ago and opened fire over us…

…You have stood against fire and dissension. You have left no place for this treason in this great country. Because, you are the Turkish Nation. Because, you are Turkey. You are the heirs of a great ancestry and a great history. You were just like the Barbaros that had defeated the crusaders in and like Turgut Reis in Preveza…

…‘What makes the flags is the blood on them; the ground is called a homeland if there are those dieing for it’. And, what we are living on is a homeland and it has been molded with the blood of martyrs…

…I wish for the blessing of God upon all of our countrymen martyred by FETÖ and its other traitor partners PKK, ISIL, PYD, and YPG. I wish recovery for our veterans. And, I say, ‘martyrs don’t die; this homeland cannot be divided’…

…Today, you have crowded Yenikap regardless of your roots, in order to say ‘my homeland, my flag, my nation, my democracy, my martyrs.’ As long as this continues to be like this, no traitor could ever bear with us.

Let’s open up a new page with national consensus, by following up with rule of law; and let’s draw the map of our future by paying attention to human rights and freedoms…

…The grandchildren of Constantine who had lose İstanbul wait eagerly for us to get separated. Just as Nene Hatun became great in the face of Armenian gangs, we should also create such a front against those who are in opposition to Turkey. With all 7 regions, 4 seasons, and 81 provinces, we are Turkey. We are not going to allow a new interregnum on this land that is the cradle of cultures and civilizations…

…This nation is not an orphan; this state is not an orphan. Turkey will rise with hearts full of love and loyalty…We have no choice but to succeed. We have no other option but to live independently. There is no other way out except getting rid of FETÖ which has spread out within the state like a cancer.”

CHP Chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu: Including myself, all politicians must learn a lesson from this situation’

In the aftermath of the coup attempt, CHP had also held Democracy Meetings in İstanbul and İzmir with the message of ‘No to coups; no to dictatorships’. Having accepted Erdoğan’s invitation to the Presidential Palace, Kılıçdaroğlu took part in the efforts of creating unity and consensus. As decrees began to be passed under state of emergency, leaving no role to standing MPs, Kılıçdaroğlu made demands for rule of law and self-criticism by also initially rejecting Erdoğan’s invitation to the Yenikapı Democracy and Martyrs meeting. After a convention of CHP central board, it was decided for Kılıçdaroğlu to indeed attend the meeting, though certain objections within the party itself remained.


In his speech during the meeting, Kılıçdaroğlu listed 12 items that he proposed as topics to be addressed and be adhered to the most. Extending his gratitude and appreciation for the people and the MPs who stayed on duty to protect the country, Kılıçdaroğlu also expressed his regrets in other party leaders not being invited to the meeting and underlined the importance of women, as well.

Highlights of Kılıçdaroğlu’s statements are as follows:

“…Today is an important day of our democracy… On the night of July 15, a gang within the Turkish Armed Forces tried to carry out a coup against Turkish democracy; they wanted to do it against the Parliament. Said better, they wanted to do it against all of you, against all of us. Thankfully, they could not. I extend my thanks especially to the Speaker of the Parliament who let the parliament building open and in operation all night and until the morning on that night…

…We have 240 martyrs…We are not going to forget them, and not allow them to be forgotten…The leaders and politicians of all four parties that have seats in the parliament have portrayed a clear stand against coups; and, they have signed the democracy proclamation against the coup all together. I wish, not just leaders within the parliament but also those outside would have also been here today at this beautiful meeting. Because, as Veteran Mustafa Kemal Atatürk says: ‘If the issue is about homeland, all the rest is out of question’…

…July 15 has opened up a ‘consensu gate’ for us. Since July 15, we have a new Turkey. If we can carry on this strength, this culture of agreement further, we will be able to leave our children a better country. My dear friends, why and how have we come to this point? Firstly, let’s make the right diagnosis so that we can give the treatment well. We have a great saying that goes as ‘a good example has twice the value of a good advice.’ Including myself, all politicians must learn a lesson from this situation. Without giving place to another aggression, we must take Turkey to the level of modernity…

…So, what must we do and say? I have prepared 12 items…

1- Let’s not infuse politics into mosques, barracks, and judiciary…

2- In our politics, we must include ‘self-criticism’…

3- We must base state structure on competence; we must not give up on merit system…

4- We must embrace democracy in all circumstances…

5- Democracy is the willpower of the people; so, we say neither coups, nor dictatorship…

6- We must look after the principles and values of the Republic…The Republic is ours; it is our labor and protecting it is our duty. Of course, Atatürk did not do it all by himself…If it was not for the Republic, today Recep Tayyip Erdoğan could not have been the President; Binali Yıldırım could not have been the PM; and, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu could not have been the CHP Chair. This is how significant the Republic is…

7- We must strengthen the parliamentarian system…

8- Free media! My countrymen, if media were not free on the night of July 15, nobody would have been able to go out to the streets…And, the actual importance of the media is this: we are politicians, we can make mistakes. Those who are to express these mistakes are the media. All politicians must give importance to the freedom of media…

9- Independence of the judiciary! FETÖ grew within the army, within the judiciary, and within all parts of the state…We want justice! If a judge is giving orders not with his/her conscious but rather with the order received from Pennsylvania, then he/she is not a judge…

10- July 15 has demonstrated the importance of secularism. We have seen how those who had been in all kinds of unlawful activity could cheat the people by using our religion and our faith. Secularism means freedom of belief and conscious…It means respect to beliefs and respect to people…

11- In order to strengthen democracy, we must establish an education system that encourages ‘questioning.’ Our children must not just act as they receive orders from someone. They must at least learn to question things with their own minds. What does the great creator say: ‘Aren’t you using your minds?’

12- You know FETÖ; the whole world know FETÖ. In the past, we heard Balyoz, Ergenekon, spy cases,etc. Many of our innocent soldiers and generals, including our former Chief of General Staff, were prisoned. We had said that it was wrong; and, it turned out that all of it was a plot… So, I call on you from here: not only for you but for all victims of this situation must be granted their rights back. If we do it this way, our state will rise up to a respectable level.

…My friends, these are the 12 items for our road map; it could be more or less. It is the duty of all of us to lead Turkey to a straight path…

…Let’s work all together and do what is necessary. I see that women are at the front lines in this square. Just as they also stood up in front of the tanks on the night of the coup. I take great pride in this. I truly want, with all of my heart, for them to be with us in all parts of life. Support and participation of our women is irreplaceable. If a women’s faces are smiling in a country, that means that country is a happy place to be. We are all children of this land; we grew up with the flowers and folk songs of this land and with the prayers of our mothers. We have lived in unity; and, we are going to live in unity. These lands are fertile and they have seen Yunus Emre, Mevlana, Neşet Ertaş, Emrah, Ferhat, Şirin, and many many more.

Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım: ‘The coup that does not kill us, makes us stronger’

Greeting the crowd with appreciation, PM Binali Yıldırım gave place in speech to the greatness of the people’s courage in dispersing the coup plotters and in demonstrating residence against it all throughout the Democracy Duty Meetings, that have been taking place since the day of the attempt. PM Yıldırım also made references to the versus from famous poets Nazım Hikmet Ran and Ahmet Arif.


PM Yıldırım made the following remarks:

İstanbul, oh precious İstanbul, you are amazing today! Just as how excited Sultan Fatih was when he had entered this city on 29 May 1453, you are that much excited today!… Just as how hopeful Mustafa Kemal was on 16 May 1919 when leaving İstanbul on board Bandırma ship, our nation is that much hopeful today. Just as how joyful the Turkish nation was on 6 October 1923 when looking at the enemies leaving, they are that much joyful today! Just as how beautiful İstanbul was on 27 May 1994 when electing a devote lover of Turkey; a local of Kasımpaşa; and a brave man; it is just as beautiful today!…

…I greet all of our democracy martyrs and their families with all my heart… I greet CHP Chair and all members of CHP for demonstrating a firm stand siding by national will since the first hours of the coup. I greet the respectable chair of MHP and all of its members for siding with our government and our presidents and for being a defender of democracy. My friends from AKP, from CHP, from MHP and my valuable citizens from all parts: I extend my great thanks to all of you for allowing us to live such greatness and for making us come here altogether.”

Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar: ‘Differentiating between the traitors in soldier uniforms and the real soldiers will give us strenght’

Appearing on a platform in front of the crowds for the first time since the coup attempt, Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar also gave a speech. One of the members of the Turkish Armed Forces taken hostage during the coup attempt, Akar also blamed Gülen organization in his speech and asked of people to make the necessary differentiation between the traitors and the real and devoted soldiers in order to support the armed forces.


Parts of Akar’s statements:

“Heroic and self-sacrificing members of our graceful nation: I greet all of you with respect and fondness. I feel the honor and excitement for being here with you today at the Democracy and Martyrs Meeting. On the day of July 15, traitor and terrorist FETÖ, which had found a way to get into our country’s all institutions and the Armed Forces, had made our nation go through this abasement and disgrace in such an unprecedented way…

…Those perpetrationg this will be punished in a heaviest way. I would like to especially underline this: the terrorist traitors of FETÖ who had attempted to carry out a coup attempt in evening of July 15 have nothing to do with the great majority of the Turkish Armed Forces, which our people define as ‘the prophet’s home’…

…I extend my respects and gratitude to our precious nation once again. As Veteran Mustafa Kemal Atatürk said ‘sovereignty belongs to the people’ and this will remain so forever…”

President Erdoğan: ‘If the parliament brings forth death pealty, I will approve it!’

Taking the stage as the last to speak, President Erdoğan greeted the crowds with Rabia sign and extended his appreciation and thanks to all attending and supporting the meeting. Reminding on the vehemence of the attempt of the coup plotters, Erdoğan also once again underlined the significance of the people’s bravery in breaking FETÖ’s game. Erdoğan gave references to the Ottoman victories of the past, as well as, the victories of the people during the Independence War, praising the nation’s history. As demands for ‘death penalty’ were heard from the crowds, Erdoğan repeated his approval of reinstatement of death penalty, should the parliament brings it to the floor.

Main points of Erdoğan’s speech included his following statements:

…My precious nation that once again stood up for its independence and its future on July 15 and that did not surrender this country to FETÖ: I greet you with heartful feelings and with longing. I once again extend my thanks to all of my siblings that had the courage to stand up in the face of rifles, tanks, helicopters, and planes by going out to the streets on July 15… 240 of our citizens reached the heavens. May Allah’s blessings be upon them… those who have reached the honor of martyrs and veterans have written their names to history with golden letters…

…For all 79 million of us: may our holy war be blessed! May İstanbul’s holy war be blessed; may Ankara’s holy war be blessed; and may each martyr’s holy war be blessed…This nation is something else! Really, just as the Turkish nation had opened up the gates to Anatolia a thousand years ago in Malazgirt, they stood up against the coup plotters on July 15 the same way. With the same vision that Shah Süleyman had established our state in these lands in 1075, we stood up against the coup!…

…Just as Osmangazi had established the mightiest state in history with certain principles; we also defended those same principles. Just as bloodshed took place in Dardanelles, we repelled FETÖ with the same willpower. July 15 has shown to our friends that this country is strong enough to deal with not only diplomatic attacks but also with military attacks…Those who had wished for Turkey to demolish on that night, had woken up the next morning with the depressing realization that they have got a tough task in their hands…The image we have created today is as distressing to our enemies as the morning of July 16 was…And, this is also the declaration and proof that Turkey will indeed reach its targets for 2023… We will be humble and we will love each other not for the sake of position and status but for the sake of Allah…

…Nobody will be able to take over this nation. Now, the leaders of our political parties are here and they know your demands. And, since you demand death penalty, the office to decide on that is the Parliament. I will approve such decision if it is to come from the Parliament. After seeing my brother’s body split in half on Vatan Street in İstanbul, is it possible to put this issue aside? In Ankara, a sister’s head was separated from her body and her head had fallen on the roof of the congressional center. After seeing this, we cannot say there is no death penalty in EU or wherever. There is in USA, in Japan, and in China. If this nation makes a decision in that regard, I believe, the political parties would also decide likewise…

…FETÖ made calculations of many things in a sneaky way but they could not make the calculations right about this nation… They thought these people would not come forth. But, what happened? Those who did not see this lost!… The names of organizations may change, their members may change but the fact that they are all enemies of Turkey does not change. On the one side, there is the state of the Republic of Turkey, and, on the other, there are those groups using ethnicity or religion. Greetings to all 79 million from here! Some of the members of the terrorist organizations are waiting on for their sentences and some others are already sentenced and jailed; while some others are being judged in their graveyards.”

Sources: http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/devlet-bahceli-konstantin-in-torunlari-hevesle-dagilmamizi-beklemektedir-123318.html

http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/kilicdaroglu-ndan-yenikapi-da-12-maddelik-manifesto-123319.html

http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/basbakan-yildirim-bizi-oldurmeyen-her-darbe-bizi-guclendirir-123321.html

http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/erdogan-yenikapi-da-konusuyor-meclis-idami-getirirse-onarim-123323.html

http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/genelkurmay-baskani-hulusi-akar-yenikapi-mitinginde-konustu-123320.html

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