Turkey has been facing its worst mine disasters ever. on the 13th of May a mine accident happened and 283 miners dead in this accident. The total number of victims still unknown, the government cannot give proper explanations and not no clear data is given. The workers say that there were 787 workers inside the mine, 283 is dead, 140 is wounded and the rest is still inside there.
The people of Soma is very angry about the current situation. The families of the victims are devastated, their pain is indefinable.
Leaving all question marks about the accident, there were two events that cannot be forgotten. Yesterday the prime minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited Soma for condolence. But this visit was not they had imagined.
He made a speech and tried to emphasize that is the fate of the miners and gave examples from English and American history, great mine accidents happened in last century. This kind of speech was perceived negatively and the mob started to protest Erdoğan. He tried to talk with the protesters but he not calm down, he said: “Why don’t you come closer and boo me”, the angry mob was shouting that he is a “murderer” and a “thief,” reportedly forcing the prime minister to take shelter in a local store. During his route to the market he walked up to some protesters and shouted at them, and finally, he punched a protester. Then his bodyguards take over the turn and beat the young man wildly. The young protester’s name is Taner Kuruca. These moments were all captured:
Video Footage: Erdoğan Punching a protester
1st video footage from outside of the store of Erdoğan Punching Protester
2nd video footage You may see the punch and the assault from 1:50 of the video
Update: 3rd video footage, PM Erdoğan threatens the local with slapping
Today we have new video footage, the video clearly showing a scandal, Prime Minister Erdoğan walks to the protesters and threatens them, says “If you boo the prime minister you will be slapped” the video and the sound is clear at the moment and leaves no suspect that the prime ministers attack to the protester.
With this video, the popular discourse “Advanced Democracy brought by Justice and Development Party” is abolished. The question is how can a prime minister threatens a citizen with physical action, how could it be taken in a modern democracy? Protesting is defined as a basic democratic right in modern countries, but it seems that after the Gezi Park protests, Turkey is losing its democratic notion, and getting closer to a Sultanate regime.
The assault was not the only insane thing that happened in Soma, Prime Minister Erdoğan’s adviser Yusuf Yerkel kicked a citizen who lost his relative in the mine accident. He was protesting prime minister Erdoğan with his anger caused by her loss. But as a routine practice, the bodyguards and security forces attacked the protester and for this time a civilian, prime minister’s aide Yusuf Yerkel started to kick the poor man.
Video footage of Prime Minister’s aide Yusuf Yerkel kicking a protestor
These are one of the shameful events in modern Turkey’s history. So sad to see such a statesman assault his own people. The downfall of Erdoğan dream was already started in 2013 Gezi Park Protests and his increasing anti-democratic habits turned him such a man as you have just seen above.