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Sauter, Dieter

Türkei-Korrespondent für die schweizerische Wochenzeitung WOZ

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2 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

WOZ - Die Wochenzeitung - Switzerland | 18/07/2013

Turkish democracy growing from the bottom up

The anti-terrorism units of the Turkish police on Tuesday searched the homes of several members of the government-critical Taksim Solidarity protest movement and arrested dozens of people. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is hitting back ever harder as the movement gains in strength, comments the left-wing weekly WOZ: "The AKP is threatening to slip off into the big pond where all the other has-been Turkish parties are boating, whose lack of credibility facilitated the rise of the AKP in the first place. At the same time the new citizens' organisation is starting to get organised. Several times a week open air Taksim Solidarity gatherings are taking place in about fifty different Istanbul neighbourhoods. ... By now the movement has published seven editions of its Internet magazine. Caricatures, stickers, picture stories and slogans are cropping up everywhere, all brightly coloured, funny or ironic - a form of political confrontation that has never existed before on the Bosphoros."

WOZ - Die Wochenzeitung - Switzerland | 09/06/2011

Authoritarian party system

With a view to the parliamentary elections in Turkey on Sunday, the leftist intellectual weekly WOZ criticises the authoritarian structure of Turkish parties: "According to the law governing political parties passed by the military after the 1980 coup, the leader of a party is regarded as an absolute ruler. ... As a result, party loyalty is correspondingly low among parliamentarians. In the two legislature periods since 2002, almost thirty representatives changed party each time, some more than once. ... No wonder no party has been able to develop into something like an institution, as they have in Western democracies. Instead they are conglomerations around a given leader. The result: up to now all of Turkey's major parties have either split up or disbanded with their leader's departure. ... A reform of the Political Parties Law is not in sight, because those who benefit the most from the current authoritarian system are the leaders themselves. Be that as it may, there's been very little talk of democracy at all in this campaign."

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