Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu has criticized the Cumhuriyet daily for a news story arguing that three factions are competing inside the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
“The Cumhuriyet newspaper has been already sown discord. They sent one prime minister and two ministers to face the death penalty. They have caused every military coup since 1960, but that was not enough for them,” Soylu tweeted, referring to a military coup in May 1960 that led to the execution by hanging of then-Prime Minister Adnan Menderes and two of his ministers.
The reporting that annoyed Soylu indicated that the factions were clustered around three figures: Treasury and Finance Minister and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s son-in-law Berat Albayrak; Erdoğan’s son Bilal Erdoğan; and Minister Soylu.
According to the Cumhuriyet report the latest sign of the schism inside the party was revealed when Albayrak wanted to determine the mayoral candidates of İstanbul’s districts for upcoming local elections in March.
Mayor candidate hopeful and incumbent Parliament Speaker Binali Yıldırım, however, objected to that.
The report claimed that even Erdoğan’s daughter Sümeyye Erdoğan has been influential in assignments in party or state positions.