Erdogan: "All branches of the state should take a united stance against criminal gangs like Ergenekon"
The legislative, executive and judicial branches should take a united stance on fighting criminal gangs like Ergenekon, said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday. Speaking to news channel 24, Erdogan compared Italy's Operation Clean Hands to the controversial probe of Ergenekon, a criminal network suspected of plotting a coup against the government. Stating that the government is trying to carry out the law, he added, "The opposition takes a different stance on this." Touching on the issue of illegal phone taps, he said that Turkey has taken measures similar to those in other countries to eliminate this. On the case against the Lighthouse Foundation, a German-based charity run by Turks, he stated that legal process between the two countries is continuing. Adding that German judiciary has been hearing the case, he also decried opposition efforts to tie the government to the alleged wrongdoing. Erdogan also spoke about government initiatives such as TRT 6, the first Kurdish-language channel of the state-owned Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT), adding, "The opposition cannot tolerate such democratic developments." In related news, Erdogan will today attend an inauguration ceremony at the newly modernized Sarp border gate, set to be a gateway to the Caucasus and Central Asia with renovations by the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodities Exchanges (TOBB). Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili is reportedly also set to attend the ceremony.