Turkish Political Crisis Deepens As Three Cabinet Ministers Quit; Prime Minister Erdogan Urged To Resign

Tyler Durden's picture

The Turkish high-profile corruption scandal, whose fallout has so far resulted in the jailing of the sons of the Turkish minister of the interior Muammar Guler, just escalated sharply following the abrupt resignation of three key ministers from PM Erdogan's government. Earlier today, first Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan and then Interior Minister Muammer Guler submitted their resignations to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan Wednesday morning. A few hours later, they were joined by Environment and Urban Planning Minister Erdogan Bayraktar who also tendered his resignation as a member of parliament, however instead of doing so in a complacent manner, he lashed out at the PM and called for his resignation which roiled markets following an earlier relief rally.

As a reminder, Turkey has been shaken by three sensational corruption investigations last week that led to dozens of detentions and 24 arrests of people ranging from influential business leaders to senior bureaucrats and the ministers' sons. Caglayan's son Salih Kaan Caglayan, Guler's son Baris Guler and Bayraktar's Oguz Bayraktar were among those arrested in the sweep, which Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's prime minister, called a "dirty operation"  to smear his administration and undermine the country's progress.

Today's developments are likely the beginning of the end for the current Prime Minister, because the shakeout "signaled a deepening rift in Mr. Erdogan's government." As the WSJ reports, while the economy and interior ministers joined the premier in condemning the bribery investigation as a plot to weaken the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, Mr. Bayraktar lashed out at Mr. Erdogan for forcing the resignations, and in doing so also called for Erdogan's resignation.

"I don't accept being pressured because of this investigation, which involves bribery and corruption, and being told to 'resign and issue a comforting statement,'" Mr. Bayraktar said, according to his office. The minister, whose son was questioned in the probe, denied wrongdoing. "To soothe the nation, I believe that the prime minister should resign, too," he said.

Earlier in the day, the other ministers who quit echoed Mr. Erdogan's allegations that the probe was politically motivated.

"It is very clear that the operation performed as of Dec. 17 is a dirty setup against our government, our party and our country. I have resigned from my post of economy minister to help bring out the truth and spoil this ugly game, which has included my child and my close colleagues," Mr. Caglayan said in a written statement, according to his spokesman, who declined further comment.

The local markets were whipsawed by the developments, first rallying after the first two resignations, but falling sharply when Mr. Bayraktar called on the prime minister to quit.

The benchmark BIST-100 stock index reversed gains, falling 3.5% to 66555.3 in afternoon trading. The lira declined 0.5% to 2.0876 against the dollar, creeping toward Friday's record low. The government's borrowing costs rose as its benchmark two-year bond yields pared gains to 9.60% from 9.42%, after closing at 9.68% Tuesday. Bond yields decline as prices rise.


"With the two ministers' resignations in the morning, the lira gained because the market saw it as a positive step that would reduce prevailing political uncertainties. But the third minister's resignation, and call on the prime minister to step down, deteriorated investor sentiment," said Gokce Celik, an economist at Finansbank in Istanbul. "Turkey's lira has been under extra pressure recently due to domestic political uncertainties... it's going to be difficult for it to stabilize as the year draws to an end."

What may be behind the ongoing scandals? According to Al Jazeera, the investigations are widely believed to be linked to the recent tensions between the United States-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen's movement and Erdogan's AKP that, many analysts say, used to be allies in the past in a struggle against Turkey's politically dominant military. The tensions, which have been festering for months, peaked after the government's plans to abolish private prep schools. Gulen owns a large network of such schools. Erdogan recently said that those behind the investigations were trying to form a "state within a state", an apparent reference to Gulen's movement, whose followers are influential in Turkey's police and judiciary.

Corruption in state tenders, money laundering, bribery, gold smuggling and distribution of prime land among favourites are among the accusations put on the suspects, sources at Istanbul chief prosecutor's office told Turkish media. Formal criminal charges are going to be revealed after the prosecutor's office announces the actual bills of indictment for the three simultaneous investigations it has been carrying out.

Those detained include the sons of Interior Minister Muammer Guler, Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan and Environment Minister Erdogan Bayraktar. Various well-known businessmen were also detained, including Suleyman Aslan, the chief executive of Turkish state bank Halkbank, and Ali Agaoglu, a construction tycoon, as well as Mustafa Demirand, the mayor of Istanbul district Fatih. Some of these prominent people were arrested while others were released by court order, all pending trial (much more on the tensions within the Turkish government here).

As for just how the CIA is involved, as it always tends to be in any strategic government destabilization process, we will likely find out shortly.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Richard Chesler's picture

The primary role of governments today is to promote corruption and protect monopolies - cough Obozo cough. Why do people still act surprised when minor details come out to the surface is beyond me.

BaBaBouy's picture

WHEN Will USA Gov't/FED Members Start Resigning/Fleeing ??????????????????????

Follow Dear Nixon ...

GET Rich Bitchies, Thats The Game...GET RICH In Gobmint !!!

ZH Snob's picture

you can bet none of this was for a true reform of corruption.

some other Turk wants it, that's all.

Rafferty's picture

Always was and always will be in Turkey.

djsmps's picture

When I drink, I feel like I'm immune to everything.

Alethian's picture

You are. Cheers. *clink* 

lakecity55's picture

The very first phone call Backdoor Barry made to a Head of State was Ergodan.

If he gets the boot, it will be another ally of Backdoor Out The Door!!

Seize Mars's picture

Slightly OT, but not really...

Israel sends radioactive roofing tiles to Egypt, which politely returns them.


TheLoveArtist's picture

Just the Joos trying to get rid of their radioactive waste, so they put it in a ceramic medium, can't blame the world's greatest shysters for trying to pull it off.  You don't think in that tiny country they have room for all that radioactive waste generated in the creation of 400 or more nuclear weapons with plutonium do you?  Hey maybe they can make ceramic yahmukas, wear those for a while and quite literally all that will be left underneath those skullcaps will be just a skull LOL.

Sudden Debt's picture

The political fuse on Turkey was lit a few years ago when the senior army generals quit and left the country.

The corrupt will now be replaced by the fanatic in the next elections and Europe will start to need to think about a new portal keeper of Europe against the east.

Charles Wilson's picture

"...Europe will start to need to think about a new portal keeper of Europe against the east."

See also: Flavius Constantinus Heraclius.  He neede an agreement with some of the tribesmen to shore up the Eastern Front.

He was gone in a few years but we're still dealing with the results of THAT agreement.

*Sigh*.  Caesar Worship.  What'cha gonna do?

nah's picture

this is good news if your a refugee


merry christmas!

SeattleBruce's picture

How quaint - there are actually arrests and resignations for corruption. We're so far beyond that in the US...

Blame Crash's picture

Now isn't that the truth. But it's not just the US.

tony wilson's picture

soros freedoms for his boss the rothschilds.

erdogan is a jewish pimp an agent on script with the rape of old lovely syria but clearly not happy about the turkey year zero approach.

turkey is a future threat to israel if they do pipeline deals with iran.

turkey must be broken down libyan and syrian style.

operation zion neighbour wipe out is going swimmingly.

Blame Crash's picture

You have any proof of these allegations?

Or is just more of "Israel is guilty of everything, everywhere, always and forever"?

Blazed's picture

Considering how Israel treats its "allies", no wonder its enemies are so adamant.

"The past year has seen a significant boon in ties between Israel and China. The development of relations between the two countries was highlighted during a visit to Israel last week by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi."


U.S. Furious With Israel After Sale of Advanced Military Technology to China | Jewish & Israel News Algemeiner.com


"Leaked documents reveal US sees Israel as a spying threat"



None of that is even mentioning Israel's historical track record of spying on the US and West, all the way back to the Kosher Bolshevik days. Also not to mention the Israeli terrorist attacks on Westerners, the King David Hotel bombing, the Lavon Affair, the USS Liberty attack, 9/11 connections and beyond. And yet less than 3% of the US population are able to increase US funding to Israel, plus obtain completely separate sweet weapons deals. http://forward.com/articles/184017/israel-pushes-for-boost-in-us-aid-to-more-than-b/?p=all
smacker's picture

"turkey is a future threat to israel if they do pipeline deals with iran."


Argh! This may be the reason why Erdogan has to go.

Didn't anyone tell him that doing a deal with Iran for a pipeline to go thru his country is not acceptable.

SWRichmond's picture

Turkey is both pivotal and vulnerable.  A great deal of Caspian energy flows through Turkey into Europe, across the Black Sea through the Bosphorus to the Med, and through Turkey to the Med.  Turkey also imports more than half of its energy, as far as I can tell almost exclusively from the East. 

Turkey shares borders with Syria on its south, Iraq, Iran, Georgia in the Caucasus (do these country's names sound familiar?).  The Russian Med fleet sails through the Bosphorus from Sevastopol in order to get from the Black Sea to the Med and blue water.  Turkey is critical, and thus for it unhappily it will be an ongoing hot spot for proxy struggles as the US - Russia/China tension heats up.  Expect Georgia to heat up (again) after the Sochi Games are concluded. Putin has just handed Obama another embarrassment in Ukraine, but it's not over yet.

Oh look: the Americans want to help furnish energy to Turkey:  




Peter Pan's picture

It must be something in the Mediteranean waters that is causing governments to beome corrupt, stupid or evil. Take your pick from Turkey, Greece, Israel, Syria, Zlebanon, Spain, Italy, France and the rest.

I see the army returning in Turkey in some shape or form.

Escapedgoat's picture

You 're  right. I can't decide which is worst the Greek or Turkish politicians.

We have learned however that , the Foreign Minister of Greece in his PREVIOUS  form , before he CHANGED his surname to Venizelos, was in fact TURK-OGLOU. The Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan has a face like a Georgian, born not far from Trapezounda, in a place originally called Potamya (River in Greek) . Go figure .

We will not go into the Ancient Greek Political family that of the  KARAMAN Alis. It is too much to bear. It also is rumoured that the Demirel and Karamanlis Families had common interest in a company based in Switcherland. As for the Papandreou I give up.

suicidalpsychologist's picture

meet the new boss, same as old boss. animals, the lot of us.

earleflorida's picture

#1   Erdogan supports the Muslim [MB] Brotherhood (100%)

#2    Thinks of Turkish Kurds as a sub-culture (NE Syrian Kurd's are expendable ?)!

#3 Saudi Arabia  & Bandar/Bush with the support of Tel Aviv will do their best to destroy the MB permanently-- as President Morsi is being dragged through the mud as a war criminal currently (Hezbollah and Hamas are next?... but, WHY?)!

#4  The jihadist fighting in Syria that were supported (??? prove it!?!) by Turkey are Pakistani (the worst of the badass) Taliban, Chechen terrorist ('Boston Marathon Bomber' brothers and a few released Arab's? the public is unaware of [in which Vlad warned the USSA many months before-- another miss by NSA?), and Arab's(al Qaeda/ Saudi Arabia's finest via BandarBush?).

#5   Corruptness in Secretarian Governments runs deep when one owns (selects/ appoints) all the Judges and Courts/ Security apparatus-- think of Iran, and then superimpose these parallels into esoteric governments, starting with the obsolete CIA/ FBI of the USSA patterned after Nazi Germany's SS !!!

 Ref:    "Iran still digging out of Ahmadinejad-era corruption"     12/21/13  by Kourosh Avaei    


thankyou, Tyler


~~~  MERRY Christmas!  ~~~  

adeptish's picture

Cue John McCain in 3,2,1....

Joe A's picture

Sounds like a coup of the extremists.

Joebloinvestor's picture

I don't remember innocent people resigning, but I could be wrong.

QQQBall's picture

Money Laundering? Just pay the $32,000 fine and move on - on wait that is in USSA. 



Miss Expectations's picture

In other news:

Turkey requests Santa Claus’ bones from Pope

The Turkey-based Santa Claus Peace Council has said it has written a letter to Pope Francis, requesting the return of the bones of Saint Nicholas.

Council Chairman Muammer Karabulut said they were expecting Pope Francis to give a positive response to their request to have a meeting on the bones, which are currently in Bari, Italy.

“We have been struggling for the return of the bones since 1995. State institutions have also been involved in this struggle,” Karabulut said. “So far, we have not reached a conclusion.”

Saint Nicholas, a historic Christian saint, died in 343 at the age of 73 in Demre, currently a district of the Mediterranean Turkish province of Antalya. His habit of performing miracles and his reputation of giving secret gifts to the faithful made him a model for Santa Claus.


Miss Expectations's picture

In other, other news:

History of the Magi: Who were the Wise Men?

The safest conclusion is that the Magi of Christmas were Persian, for the term originated among the Medo-Persians, and early Syriac traditions give them Persian names.


I Write Code's picture

How quaint this all seems.

Here in the US we no longer have corruption.

We washed it all away with virgin dollars from the fed and are all now as clean as the driven snow.

WTFUD's picture

Yep when the writing is on the wall trust in the ussa & banksters to find newly liberated sheeples.

Crash Overide's picture

Side note: Taksim, and the Grand Bazaar...  Istanbul is a historic and beautiful city.

dunce's picture

No muslim country will ever have a stable secular government for long, every cleric will use his position to undermine the government and acquire more power and wealth. Look at Iran for the pattern. Theocracies historically have failed, socialist governments where the state is both the religion and the law also are inherently fatally flawed. A stable government can only exist when church and state are separate. Only a moral people can live in peace and progress. An individual can be moral without religion, but not a nation.

kenezen's picture

I have written for a year now that president Erdogan is far more Sharia and Sunni that he or others have spoken about. That why he has removed the more secular members of his government. There is a tri-party engagement of Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar as the new and strongest Sunni proposed Caliphate. Erdogan is the proposed active leader! We will see within a year if this becomes reality. The question is will the Europeans and American allow Turkey to remain in Nato? My guess is yes!! Even after the fomalization of their Triad formed caliphate that will then invite all other Sunni nations to join including the Muslim brotherhood reformed. .  

falconflight's picture

Appears to be more accountability in Turkey, than here, well we are a 3rd World Nation now aren't we?