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Turkey in a Week, December 31st, 2018

Metin Akpınar and Müjdat Gezen, two beloved actor and comedians were detained for their speeches at a TV show hosted by equally popular journalist Uğur Dündar. The three figures had built up their careers starting as early as mid 60s but have been marginalized by the rise of the JDP. All three define themselves strongly Kemalist and have been fiercely opposing to the ruling party from the very beginning. In response to the pair’s statements aginst the regime, president Erdoğan had vowed to retaliate. Hence on Monday the two comedians were detained by the police. The two were later released under judicial control.

The JDP has finally announced former and the last prime minister and the Parliament speaker Binali Yıldırım as their candidate for İstanbul. During the week there were debates regarding Yıldırım’s obligation to resign from his current post for nomination, between president Erdoğan and the opposition. Erdoğan has claimed that it was no necessity for Binali Yıldırım to resign while the opposition strongly argued the contrary.

After president Erdoğan targeted the FOX TV anchorman Fatih Portakal, an investigation was reported to be under way. Meanwhile, last week, the Ottoman Association (Osmanlı Ocakları, also meaning Ottoman Barracks), an organization claimed to be a para militaristic movement supporting the ruling JDP, held a protest meeting at the FOX TV’s headquarters and gave “warnings” by claiming the 52 per cent was furiously waiting at home.

The big questions hanging in the air after president Donald Trump had announced that US would withdraw its forces from Syra, started to be answered. Throughout the week the Turkish military forces built up at the border with the Syria. However, the critical news came from Syrian government. Syria has announced that the Syrian army has entered Manbij and the Syrian flag is now swaying over the region. The US having been silent and the Russia having expressed their content, Turkey seems to have lost the niche for further intervening the region.




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