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Turkey Rejects Egyptians’ Choice, Demands Egypt ‘Return to Democracy’

Turkey's political leadership - fearing for their own future - denounces ouster of Morsi and demands Egypt "return to democracy."
Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi was ousted by the Egyptian people, while Turkey's Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, feels the heat

Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi was ousted by the Egyptian people, while Turkey's Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, feels the heat

It had been one of the warmest relations between Middle Eastern leaders: Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Egypt’s President Mohammed Morsi.  Last year, Turkey pledged $2 billion in aid to Egypt whose economy, so dependent on tourism, had been battered by increasing – and realistic – fears of violence and protests.

This past spring, news stories had been floated that Morsi was going to accompany Erdoğan on a trip the Turkish leader has planned to make to Gaza. And last September, Morsi attended Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) congress in Ankara.

And then the Egyptian people, many millions strong, rejected their president’s many, rapid moves towards the rigid Islamization of their country, and the military removed President Morsi from power in the Egyptian people’s July 3 Revolution.

And as a loyal good friend, Erdoğan is now sticking up for his fellow Middle Eastern leader.  Erdoğan and his ministers are calling for a “return to democracy,” by which they mean the reinstatement of Morsi as Egypt’s president.

On Thursday, July 4, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu criticized the military intervention in Egypt, saying “Turkey does not accept the removal and detention of elected leaders from power through ‘illegitimate means,’” according to the Turkish newspaper, Hurriyet Daily News.

Of course, part of the driving force behind the Turkish government’s outrage over the removal of Morsi by the Egyptian military may be the hot breath they feel on their own necks; the Turkish government itself has been the target of three attempted military coups in recent history.

There are other similarities between the two leaders – both Morsi and Erdoğan moved their respective countries towards increasing Islamization, albeit Erdoğan’s shift has been more of a slow but steady creep away from the secularism of Turkey’s historic leader Mustafa Kemal Ataturk who transformed the former Ottoman Empire into a modern, secular nation, while Morsi’s was more of a mad dash from what was only a fleeting position of potential secularism.

“Leaders who come to power with open and transparent elections reflecting the will of the people can only be removed by elections, that is, the will of the nation,” Dovutoğlu said to reporters in Istanbul, on July 4. Dovutoğlu also spoke on Thursday about the situation in Egypt with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. The United States, like Turkey, seemed stunned by the rapidity of Morsi’s fall, and until even the day of Morsi’s removal were still urging the Egyptian people to retain the first elected president in Egypt’s history.

Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ said the July 3 military intervention did not reflect the people’s will and urged the country to “return to democracy.” Perhaps none of the reporters had the nerve to ask how to measure the will of the people when millions of Egyptians showed up to demand Morsi’s removal.

“The power change in Egypt was not a result of the will of the people. The change was not in compliance with democracy and law,” Bozdağ said in Ankara. “In all democratic countries, elections are the only way to come to power,” he said.

“Everyone … who believes in democracy should naturally oppose the way this power change happened because a situation that cannot be accepted by democratic people has emerged in Egypt,” said Bozdağ.

Prime Minister Erdoğan cut short his holiday and returned to Turkey on Thursday to discuss the situation in Egypt with his top ministers.

A statement was released by the Turkish Parliament’s Human Rights Commission, which was signed by parties across the Turkish political spectrum: the ruling Justice and Development Party, the main opposition Republican People’s Party, the opposition Nationalist Movement Party and the opposition Peace and Democracy Party.

The ruling power that was usurped by unauthorized powers should be given back to the [Egyptian] people. All democratic individuals and institutions across the world should stand against such moves, which have the potential for human rights violations.

Thus far the people of Turkey have not yet made clear their position about the ouster of the Egyptian president, so eyes will be back on Taksim Square to see whether the Turkish opposition is emboldened by the ability of the Egyptian street to topple their leader, and if so, to see how the Turkish government responds.

About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


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21 Responses to “Turkey Rejects Egyptians’ Choice, Demands Egypt ‘Return to Democracy’”

  1. bravo, a wonderful article. morse usurped the meaning of demoracy after he took ofrice, by becoming a dictator.

  2. Yechiel Baum says:

    Recep Tayyip Erdoğan – your are facing the inevitable – you chose the wrong side!

  3. The many US goverments understud and understand the polyci in Midle East, and it looks will not understand or will not understand, becouse all the muslims in Midle East countries are living surrealistic life, including Mr. Kerry.

  4. Mehmet Orhan says:

    you are on dreams, wake up. OTTAMAN is coming…

  5. Emre Ekim says:

    this article is only a jewish dream. İt is impossible to stage a coup in Turkey. You will see the power of muslims by means of Turkey in near future. You will see the power of the Turkish economy and you can not make any attempt.

  6. Mitch Miller says:

    Keep dreaming dumbass

  7. Aygun Nihad says:

    West Countries such as USA-EU''s orders and Israel are the one who want to step down Mr Erdogan.They don’t like an strong modern islamic country. But ALLAH will complete justice on earth one day.All what we need to do is pray to Allah for helping Mr Erdogan to make Turkey more democratic country in the world not fake democracy same as USA and EU.

  8. Aygun Nihad says:

    West Countries such as USA-EU''s orders and Israel are the one who want to step down Mr Erdogan.They don’t like an strong modern islamic country. But ALLAH will complete justice on earth one day.All what we need to do is pray to Allah for helping Mr Erdogan to make Turkey more democratic country in the world not fake democracy same as USA and EU.

  9. Aygun Nihad says:

    West Countries such as USA-EU''s orders and Israel are the one who want to step down Mr Erdogan,, they don’t like an strong modern islamic country. But ALLAH will complete justice on earth one day.All what we need to do is pray to Allah for helping Mr Erdogan to make Turkey more democratic country in the world not fake democracy same as USA and EU.

  10. There was no democracy in Egypt. Morsi and the Brotherhood had turned it into a totalitarian dictatorship.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Honest people are not going be even died be them, biography and a role model for generations want the richness of peoples, values and morals no illusions.

  12. Mesut Çiçek says:

    None of what you think will.. Manage in the Islamic world in.

  13. Mesut Çiçek says:

    None of what you think will.. Manage in the Islamic world in.

  14. Mesut Çiçek says:

    kaldırım taşı bıle devıremıyecekler devrımden bahsetmesınn…

  15. Caner Öncel says:

    Mitch Miller wait and see bastard.

  16. Caner Öncel says:

    Turkish people loves Erdogan and no one can change it. Keep dreaming you Jewish rats.

  17. Özgür Öztürk says:

    Forever Hitler

  18. Emrah Kaplan says:

    get out your dirty hands from our beloved turkiye.

  19. Nurbolat Mizanbay says:

    ousted by egyptian people? come onn, that was not people of egypt, that was the army that serves you(israel). I probably know the aim of this article, as long as Erdogan lives, he is a threat for you. That's why you write such article. But, unfortunately, you will live for a long time with that ''threat''. :D

  20. Nurbolat Mizanbay says:

    there should be ''unlike'' button!!! so i can unlike that comment

  21. Nurbolat Mizanbay says:

    Morsi was ousted by Egyptian people? Come on publisher, it was the puppy army that serves you (Israel), it was NEVER the people of Egypt. Mr. Erdogan is a living threat for the Israeli government as long as he stays in power. That is the reason you want him also ousted by the turkish army and its people. However, I am pretty sure, you will live with the threat for quite a long time.

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