Pro-Erdoğan cleric labels ‘no’ camp in referendum ‘opponents of Islam’

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Hayrettin Karaman, a leading theologian and issuer of fatwas, or religious edicts, for ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) circles and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, on Sunday said that “no” voters in an April 16 referendum that will switch Turkey to an executive presidency are opponents of Islam.

In a column published in the pro-government Yeni Şafak daily on Sunday, Karaman said most people in the “no camp” are supporters of the main opposition Republican People’s Party and pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), white Turks and Kemalists – all opponents of Islam.

Most of them are notably from the CHP and HDP, white Turks, Kemalists — opponents of Islam, fans of the West who are estranged from their own values, those who don’t want Turkey to be strong, those who don’t want the Islamic world to be united, those who don’t want Turkey and the East to leave the orbit designed by the West. That is the main reason behind ‘no’,” he wrote.

He also underlined that Turkey’s approach to the Islamic world and the East had been stonewalled by coups and coup attempts.

Erdoğan: Martyrs of July 15 were ‘yes sayers,’ those bombed people are ‘no sayers’

Meanwhile, speaking at a meeting of the Women and Democracy Association (KADEM) in İstanbul on the occasion of the upcoming International Women’s Day on March 8, President Erdoğan lumped people in the “yes” camp together with those were killed in a failed coup on July 15 of last year and people in the “no” camp with the putschists.

The symbol of peace is ‘yes.’ It is not ‘no.’ The martyrs of July 15 were ‘yes sayers’; those who bombarded people with F-16s were ‘no sayers’,” he said.

Turkey will hold a referendum on April 16 on a constitutional reform package that will bring an executive presidency to Turkey.

On July 15 of last year, Turkey survived a military coup attempt that killed over 240 people and wounded more than a thousand others.

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