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ŞÜKRÜ KÜÇÜKŞAHİN

ŞÜKRÜ KÜÇÜKŞAHİN >The first thing is to strengthen the EU anchor

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Each day Turkey becomes a witness to incredible incidents. But the biggest threat to the country is to see these incidents as normal and internalize them.

The only way Turkey can be strong in the world and in its region is to secure peace and security on its own territory.

A Turkey which has failed to keep domestic peace and lost its common values will be harmful first and foremost to itself.

To see that the fundamental requirement of national peace is to abide totally to the rule of law and be a state of rule of law is a simple patriotic truth.

A must for the CHP

Not much is left to say after we saw in the course of the past three days the arrests of journalists Can Dündar and Erdem Gül for their journalistic activities, and Tahir Elçi becoming a victim of a dark slaughter.

How can we talk about a state of rule of law when Dündar and Gül are subject to an investigation based on questions like “Why did you do this story?” and an arrest mechanism that many forget is a mechanism of prevention, not punishment.

It proves that no lesson has been learned from similar events that were lived only a couple of years ago.
The slaughter of Elçi only further aggravates the situation in a country which has become open to provocations.

It is another anomaly that all these developments have taken place under the same administration while a whole new process is being started with the European Union.

While statements by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu on his way to Brussels inflicted hope, uncontrollable incidents continue to be a hurdle at our feet.

Despite everything the European Union stands as the strongest anchor; it is the obligation of everybody and every institution, especially the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), to encourage the new process.

The CHP should get on the road and go to EU capitals to avoid a new road accident so this relationship ends up with membership.

There is no doubt the electorate who voted for the CHP thinks like that. Then, the CHP should fully support and encourage the government on the EU issue and pressure the EU, telling them: “Be genuine. Finish this business.”

The mistake of ignoring an 85-year-old tradition

But obviously the real task falls upon the shoulders of the government, whose honesty is to be tested.

The government believes it makes no mistake on any issue; it especially needs to see it is the main reason behind the stalemate created by the foreign policy conducted in the past five to six years.

It needs to, at last, recognize that to reverse the foreign policy of the republic based on “peace in the nation, peace in the world” does nothing but aggravate the instability in the Middle East.

It needs to know that Turkey cannot function with instability.

On the contrary, it has a structure which is immediately affected by the instability in its surroundings because it has strong ties with the communities that live there.

The sad, bitter picture is created by not seeing that Turkey lived in peace with its surrounding countries for the past 85 years thanks to its secular system, which obviously did have certain shortcomings.

As national interests come before emotion and hate in international relations, it is high time to prioritize diplomacy and it is of critical importance to establish strong bonds with the EU.

November/30/2015

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