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Kučera, Petr

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Respekt - Czech Republic | 29/08/2007

Abdullah Gül elected Turkish president

Petr Kučera describes Turkey's new president and outgoing Foreign Minister Abdullah Gül as a "good Islamist" and an "Islamic democrat." "He's definitely not a radical. Although he is openly committed to the religious roots of the AKP party which he co-founded, he refutes the opposition's claims that his goal is to establish an Islamic regime in Turkey. In the five years since they came to power, Gül and his colleagues have made much greater efforts towards pro-European and democratic reform than any of the secular parties did in several dozen years. The prominent Turkish journalist Mehmet Ali Birand rightly criticised the radical secularists, who are more preoccupied with the headscarf worn by the new first lady than her husband's capabilities."

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