Turkish PM doubts party ban
Erdogan says he does not believe AKP has committed any crime to warrant closure.
“I don’t believe that the AK party has committed a crime to warrant its closure. There is no way I can accept something like that,” said Erdogan.
The government has signaled that it is gearing into action to preempt the moves to ban the party.
In an interview with the Financial Times on Tuesday, Ali Babacan, the foreign minister, revealed that the Turkish government was seeking to propose laws that would change the requirements for shutting down political parties.
Erdogan, however, told Al Jazeera that that the government’s plan of action does not involve a change of the constitution, which stipulates a separation between religion and the state.
“My political party respects all the rules set by the constitution and the laws. And within this framework my party has fulfilled its responsibility in all fields,” he said. “We don’t have such an issue on our agenda at the moment.”
He said that he was starting long consultations with top aides to find the best means of addressing the situation.
“My colleagues are working on the legal process and after I return from Qatar, we will assess the situation both inside and outside our party. After that we will decide what steps we want to take,” Erdogan said.
“I’ve already convened a high-level meeting [with officials] of my political party and heard their views. They have given me the authority to work on this issue and we will continue to do that.”