MHP promises Turkish unity, but struggles to stick together

Chairman Devlet Bahceli says he’s ready for coalition talks despite divisions within the party

Photo by: Mouhssine Ennaimi,TRT World
Photo by: Mouhssine Ennaimi,TRT World

MHP Chairman Devlet Bahceli speaking at rally in Ankara

Updated Oct 27, 2015

Turkey’s far-right National Movement Party held its rally on Sunday in Ankara.

Thousands of MHP supporters, the so-called "Grey Wolves," gathered at Anadolu square to listen to their leader, former Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman Devlet Bahceli.

Bahceli said “Turkey is in a deadlock" and that the ruling AK Party of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is to blame.

“Our country is facing terrible conditions. Our future is on a knife edge. Peace and brotherhood are in danger while terrorism and separatism have gained momentum” he said.

Bahceli was enthusiastically cheered every time he slammed Davutoglu and Erdogan and accused the government of negligence: “They haven’t done enough to contain terrorism”.

 For the MHP, negotiating with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party or PKK, was a huge mistake.

 “We proved ourselves right. The government should not have trusted the PKK.”

Mehmet Yozgatlı is 83 and has always supported the Nationalist Movement Party  (Photo: Mouhssine Ennaimi,TRT World)

The 83-year-old, Mehmet Yozgatli has voted for the MHP all his life.

He told us the Nationalist Movement Party is “the only capable of putting an end to terror attacks.”

Mensure Sarriyildil: “I’m voting for the future of this country”

Like Mehmet, Mensure Sarriyildil will vote for the MHP because she believes a nationalist approach is the only solution for Turkey.

She said she is voting for “the future of the Turkish nation”.

During the rally, Devlet Bahceli spoke about the importance of unity and stability for Turkey.

But his own the party seems to be struggling with internal divisions.

More than 150 members of the MHP resigned in the past few days, including the son of the party’s founder Alparslan Turkes.

When asked about the resignations, MHP’s Deputy Chairman Emin Haluk Ayhan dismissed rumors the party could split up.

Ayhan said these were ‘minor events’. And that all parties were experiencing resignations.

During the MHP rally on Sunday, Devlet Bahceli said he and his party are ready to make a coalition with either the ruling AK Party or the opposition CHP.

But that will depend on the nationalists sticking together until after election day.

Author : Anelise Borges