Ambassador Ahmet Demirok Gave An Interview To “al Raya” Newspaper Regarding The Failed Coup Attempt
Ambassador Ahmet Demirok gave an interview to “Al Raya” newspaper regarding the failed coup attempt.
"Al Raya, 17 July 2016
Ambassador Ahmet Demirok to Al Raya:
We appreciate the position of the State of Qatar in supporting the legitimacy in Turkey
By Ibrahim Badawi
Beginning, how did you receive the news of the coup attempt and did you have any doubts about its failure?
The Turkish people believe in democracy and freedom, therefore I believe that they are fully prepared to sacrifice anything to protect democracy and freedom, and our people showed a high level of political maturity and commitment to democratic process. I have great confidence in our government and our military, and this group that attempted the coup is a very small group of Turkish army. Actually Turkish army respects the legitimacy of democratically elected government and preserves it and protects the interests of whole Turkish people.
But you didn’t believe the success of this coup?
In the beginning I had some concern, but I had full confidence that democracy would win in the end and that this coup and these traitors would fall, as long as there is no support from the people any military coup cannot succeed or to continue. Also, this coup does not fit the level of development reached in Turkey and which makes her a candidate for membership of the European Union and a model for the revival and development in the modern world.
How do you see the Qatari position at this critical moment?
I would like to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to His Highness Emir, government and people of the State of Qatar, and we highly appreciate the solidarity messages sent by H.H Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, the Emir, to his brother President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. And from my side, I received hundreds of messages from Qatari friends on the official and people levels supporting Turkey and its people at this critical moment. So I'm grateful to the Government of the State of Qatar and the friendly people on their solidarity with our people. Also, many of the residents of Qatar expressed their support to Turkey, and of course this solidarity from our brothers is very important to us because it supports and encourages us to move forward.
How do you explain the solidarity of the Qatari people with the Turkish people at all levels?
Many of these messages were addressed to the Turkish people, especially to H.E President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and all expressed the highest sense of solidarity and support for our country, and that’s come from the depth of brotherly relations between the leaderships and peoples of the two friendly countries. This will continue, inshallah, to grow stronger due to our permanent endeavor to strengthen and diversify these relations to serve the interests of both nations.
What about the Qatari diplomatic position?
We highly appreciate the Qatari diplomatic position and messages of solidarity sent by H.E Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Rahman, the Foreign Minister, and his solidarity with the Turkish state and its leadership. And we highly appreciate this position, since unity and solidarity are very important in such difficult times.
You mentioned that people protects democracy in Turkey, to what degree people was a decisive factor in the failure of this coup?
I extend my sincere greetings and thanks to all Turkish people for protecting democracy, and I am very happy about the end of this nightmare and I assure you that this coup is over, but there are still dozens of causalities from civilians, members of the police and the army. 3,000 soldiers from the participants in the coup were arrested and now under the government control where all legal measures are being taken with them from the competent authorities.
And how it will be dealt with the coup leaders?
As I mentioned, 3,000 military participants in the coup were arrested and will be prosecuted in accordance with the rules in force in Turkish law.
The Turkish government announced that Fethullah Gulen movement was behind the coup. What do you think of that?
Fethullah Gulen terrorist group was the one who managed this coup and has some sympathizers inside in the army. We would like to draw the attention of the media that Turkey will cooperate with all countries to eliminate this terrorist group. We have made clear in the Embassy statement that the size of the military involvement in the coup attempt was very limited to a category of small military ranks and the Turkish armed forces didn’t involve in the coup attempt in its entirety.
What is your explanation for the quick response of the Turkish people to the call of President Erdogan?
Turkish people have a high level of political maturity and are fully aware of the value of freedom and democracy, so they did not hesitate to meet the legitimate call and were united against the coup targeting the security and stability of our country. People were not alone, but also the Turkish parliament, all of the political parties and the media were competing in the protection of freedom and democracy.
The position of the political parties, especially the opposition, was remarkable in rejecting the coup. How do you see that?
The position of the political parties sends a very important message of which there is no return to the time of military coups in Turkey once again, and Turkey is not a country that can be managed by a coup at all. All political parties believe in democracy and support its legitimacy and its system. The political parties’ statements have emphasized on by refusing the coup and respecting the votes and they held an extraordinary session to discuss the circumstances regarding this coup.
In your opinion, what lessons are learned from these events?
It is a great victory for democracy and peoples’ will, and a very important lesson for our whole region. We thank God that the coup leaders were small group of army who are now under control and, Insallah, this will be the last military coup witnessed in Turkey's history.
Some people were waiting for the success of the coup. What is your comment?
Turkey, like any other country, has brothers and enemies. In this case success of democracy in Turkey has made our friends happy, however made our enemies unhappy. What concerns us is that the people, who gave a lesson in maturity and awareness of the importance of protecting democracy, to proceed in the way of construction and development."