Turkish CHP leader backs calls for Gulen extradition

Main opposition leader urges Pennsylvania-based preacher's extradition from US; supports changes to constitution

Turkish CHP leader backs calls for Gulen extradition

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey's main opposition leader on Tuesday called for the extradition of Pennsylvania-based preacher Fetullah Gulen, accused of being the mastermind behind the deadly July 15 coup attempt. 

"If Fetullah Gulen says 'I want to be acquitted' he has to come and be prosecuted by the independent courts in Turkey," Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu told reporters after a visit to a police facility in the Golbasi area in Ankara.

Kilicdaroglu said that Turkey's request for extradition and sending ministers to U.S. are positive for us.

Kilicdaroglu said it was an important move by the Turkish people from across the country to take to the streets in protest against the coup attempt. 

He also said his party would support necessary changes to the constitution, written in the wake of the 1980 coup. 

"We will contribute to any changes in constitution regarding the independence and impartially judiciary," Kilicdaroglu said. "I hope that the political parties will come together in the coming days and we solve this problem."

On Monday, Kilicdaroglu met behind closed doors with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party head and Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) chairman Devlet Bahceli.

After meeting with Erdogan, Yildirim said that the parties have agreed on the need for necessary changes to the constitution to ease deadlocks in the system after the July 15 failed coup.

The July 15 deadly coup attempt occurred when rogue elements in the Turkish military tried to overthrow the country's democratically elected government.

Turkey deems Gulen and his so-called parallel state responsible for the coup attempt, which martyred at least 246 people and injured more than 2,100 others, and calls for preacher's extradition to Turkey to face trial.

On July 18, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said in Brussels that his country has "a formal process for dealing with extradition requests" and that Turkey "must send evidence, not allegations".

On July 19, Turkey sent four files to the U.S. authorities regarding Gulen's extradition.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 27 Temmuz 2016, 10:20