A member of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) has submitted a written parliamentary question demanding to know if 100,000 companies have been profiled by the National Police Department on the grounds that they are close to the Hizmet movement.
Sezgin Tanrıkulu, a CHP deputy chairman, asked Efkan Ala, minister of interior, about the legal grounds for the alleged collection of information about and profiling of companies linked to the Hizmet movement, which is inspired by Fethullah Gülen, a Turkish Islamic scholar.
The Hizmet movement, a worldwide network active in education, charity and outreach, has come under fire from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party), which has claimed, since a graft probe went public in December of last year, that Hizmet has been involved in a plot against the government.
Four government ministers had to leave their posts as part of the corruption probe in which, as audio clips -- if they are authentic -- leaked over the Internet following the probe revealed, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is also implicated in the sweeping corruption scandal unearthed by the probe.
Below are the questions Tanrıkulu demanded to be answered by the minister of interior about claims of profiling:
Is the claim that 100,000 businesses in the 81 provinces [of Turkey] have been profiled by the National Police Department true?
Is the claim true that the National Police Department investigated to find out which nongovernmental organization[s] the 100,000 businesses are members of?
What nongovernmental organizations must small and medium-sized enterprises [SMEs] not become members of in Turkey?
What is the purpose of the National Police Department's gathering of information about the businesses?
What are the legal grounds for collecting information about members of [nongovernmental] organizations?
Is it true that the National Police Department inquired about the political opinions of the owners of the 100,000 businesses in the 81 provinces?
Is it true that the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Finance have initiated legal action [against these businesses] after audits as a result of the [police] inquiry?
Is it true that the National Police Department collected, without a court verdict, information about 100,000 businesses in the 81 provinces?
Published on Cihan, 14 July 2014, Monday