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Issue #1597      June 12, 2013

The choice for the working class

Statement of Central Committee of Communist Party of Turkey

1. Turkey is witnessing a genuine popular movement. The actions and protests, which started in Istanbul and spread all over Turkey, have a massive, legitimate and historic character. Most important of all is the striking change in the mood of people. Fear and apathy have been overcome as people have gained self-confidence.

2. The Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) has been part of the popular movement from first day and has mobilised all its forces, tried to strengthen the proletarian and revolutionary character of the movement, encouraged a mature attitude of discipline, and organized numerous actions and demonstrations. In this process, police forces have assaulted our party headquarters in Ankara. All over Turkey, several party members have been injured and arrested and attempts made to abduct party cadres. These attempts at provocation against our party were defeated.

3. Our emphasis on TKP’s role does not aim to underestimate the spontaneous nature of the movement or the contribution of other political actors. On the contrary, TKP stresses this movement has an aspect beyond impact of any political actor or any kind of political opportunism.

4. The call of the masses for the government to resign is an absolute demand of this movement. Though it is obvious a leftist alternative cannot be built “right now”, this demand should be expressed loudly. This option for the working people can be generated only through the energy that comes from this historical moment. TKP will focus on this and expose the real meaning of alternatives like “formation of a national government”,”which will most likely be put forward to deceive the working masses into thinking the crisis can be overcome that way.

5. Holders of political power will try to calm people down, institute control and even try to use the situation to their advantage. They can have temporary achievements, but even then, the popular movement would not be wasted. TKP is ready for a time of stubborn but intense struggle.

6. In order to act in concert, different branches of the socialist movement sharing similar goals and concerns need to immediately evaluate the rise of this popular movement. TKP, without interrupting its daily missions and activities, is going to act responsibly regarding this issue and try to create a common ground in line with the urgent demands below.

7. To nullify government plans to classify and divide the popular movement as legitimate and illegitimate, all forces need to avoid steps that might cause damage to the legitimacy of the movement. It is the political power that attacks. The people should defend themselves as well as their rightful action but never fall into the government trap of provocation.

8. While the masses chant “government, resign” the government pretends not to understand the old balance is upset fundamentally and cannot be restored. Everybody knows the popular movement is not a product of sympathy towards the trees in Gezi Park [threatened by developers]. The people’s anger is over the urban transformation projects, the terror of the market, open direct interventions in different lifestyles, the Americanism and subordination to the USA, the reactionary policies, the enmity towards the Syrian people.

9. While rolling up our sleeves in order to create an alternative of the working people, the movement needs to put forward certain concrete demands. These demands are valid in case of resignation of the Erdogan government:

a) The government must announce that projects that involve demolishing Gezi Park and Ataturk Cultural Centre are terminated.

b) Those taken into custody during the resistance must be released, and all charges against them dropped immediately.

c) All officials whose crimes against the people are proven by reports of the commissions formed by the Union of Bar Associations and local bar associations must be relieved of their duties.

d) Attempts to hinder the right of the people to get true news on developments must be stopped.

e) All prohibitions regarding meetings, demonstrations and marches must be repealed.

f) All de facto or de jure obstacles that lock out political participation of the people, including the 10 percent election threshold and anti-democratic articles of the “law on political parties,” must be abolished.

g) All initiatives that attempt to impose a monolithic life style on all people must stop.

10. These urgent demands in no case affect our right and duty to continue opposition against the political power. The people’s reaction to the government must be reinforced and efforts concentrated to bring about a real alternative in the political scene.

11. The star and crescent Turkish flag that was intended to be used to provide a shield for reactionary and chauvinist attacks against labourers, leftists and Kurdish people after the fascist military coup of September 12, 1980, is now grasped by the people out of the hands of fascism, and given to the honourable hands of Deniz Gezmiş and his comrades, as a flag in the hands of patriotic people.

12. The people’s movement, since the beginning, has persistently put down the sinister strategy to play one community against another in Turkey. This attitude must be carefully maintained, leaving no room for chauvinism or vulgar nationalism.

13. Our citizens who have lost their lives at hands of the police force of the political power have sacrificed their lives in name of a just and historic struggle. The people will never forget their names, and those responsible for their deaths will pay the price before the law.  

Next article – Unremitting injustice in Palestine

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