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Presidential candidate of the main opposition party Republican People's Party (CHP) Muharrem İnce attended a live television programme hosted by Hande Fırat on CNN Türk via phone yesterday evening (May 17).
Following his statements on the extradition of Fethullah Gülen, İnce said that the officials from the US called him. İnce made the following statement about his phone call with the US officials:
"I said that when I become the President on June 24, we will clean the judiciary and establish an independent judiciary. I said that we will bring Gülen. The Americans called me and told me that no formal request has been submitted by Turkey to the US about the extradition of Fethullah Gülen. I am asking the Dear President [Recep Tayyip Erdoğan]: Has a formal request been submitted for the extradition of Fethullah Gülen?"
In response to Hande Fırat's question, "Who is this American?", İnce said, "Ms. Hande, you work as a journalist, I am protecting our national interests."
"Who is actually alone is the Turkish press"
During the programme, İnce also responded to the comments regarding the old tension between CHP Chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu and himself as well as a column written by Fatih Altaylı entitled "Is Muharrem İnce Alone?". Stating that he has been in constant contact with Kılıçdaroğlu since the announcement of his Presidential candidacy, İnce said,
"I feel sorry for and have pity on the state of journalists since the question 'Who will be the Presidential candidate of the CHP?' started to be asked. They are so weak, so ignorant, so partial and so ill-intentioned that I really feel sorry for the state of the media."
Claiming that while the world media holds interviews with him, the media in Turkey has been ignoring him, İnce said, "Who is actually alone is the Turkish press." (TP/SD)