On 11 June, DPI hosted an online roundtable meeting entitled ‘Opposition’s Perspective on the Political, Social and Economic Effects of COVID-19 in Turkey’ with Temel Karamollaoğlu, Leader of Felicity (Saadet) Party.
During the roundtable, Temel Karamollaoğlu highlighted the key principles of the Saadet Party being moral values such as justice, social solidarity and freedom of thought. Karamollaoğlu spoke about current issues in Turkey which include polarisation, lack of freedom of press and lack of transparency in governmental institutions. He emphasised the need for dialogue that includes the opposition, in order to combat polarisation in the country. The speaker also criticised the lack of justice and transparency which generates corruption and a weak judiciary system. Strengthening of the parliament is important in bringing opposition parties together.
In addition, Karamollaoğlu discussed the importance of economic and technological development of the country, though he argued these two are of secondary importance to the aforementioned moral values. He also spoke about the foreign policy and argued that developed countries continue to be exploited today by stronger states.
The online roundtables form part of a larger series of activities in the context of the project ‘Supporting Inclusive Dialogue at a Challenging Time in Turkey’, supported by the EU and the Norwegian and Irish governments.