‘We must act within the law’

Having completed his official contacts in Uzbekistan, where he went for the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit, AKP President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan went to New York, USA, to attend the 77th General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) and hold various meetings.

Before his visit to the USA, Erdoğan answered the questions of members of the press who are known to be close to the government.

For his speech at the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the liberation of Izmir, “Unpretentious, immoral” Erdogan, who once again reacted to Izmir Metropolitan Mayor Tunç Soyer, whom he said, was targeted this time by journalist Merdan Yanardag.


Erdogan, “It is never acceptable to refer to a Sultan Abdulhamid, who ruled the Ottoman Empire for 33 years, without being embarrassed and bored. There is also a person named Merdan Yanardağ. He also uses immoral expressions and insults about the Ottoman Empire. These statements certainly constitute a hate crime. Of course, we need to go after them. So this square is not that empty. They will need to know this. If we are to be worthy of our ancestors, we must do what is necessary within the framework of the law.” he said.

Erdogan’s answers to the questions are as follows:

The Social Housing Projects you explained and the dormitories of the Ministry of Youth and Sports were the two most important topics of this week. The opposition front began to call it the concrete economy with criticism. Last year, they were saying ‘there is no place in the dormitories, the government did not build a dormitory’. When you explain the project, they criticize the point that ‘the government is constantly investing in concrete’. This is how they criticized Kanal Istanbul, bridges and roads. The opposition front against these investments of yours constantly repeats the phrase ‘These are all concrete economies’. What is your comment on these criticisms on this issue?

Without concrete, there is no building, no road, no bridge. That’s what they say, but does what they say make any sense? We opened 105 new dormitories. Beyond these 105 dormitory openings, we are much more than student demand this year. Despite all this, we are currently saying, ‘Let’s create even more added value, there will be absolutely no problems’. Such a study is now in the open. The bed capacity of our dormitories, which was 182 thousand in 2002, increased to 850 thousand in 2022. Our dorms are really luxurious. I’m going around the dorms, looking. Food is just like that. Fees are very very low. There is such a beauty in the work.

Besides all this, of course, something I am proud of is this; student finds personality. In particular, he can say, ‘This is my homeland’. We stayed in bunk beds. Now it has three beds, a bed, a study, a wardrobe, everything inside. Dormitories are like this… Many of them are very, very different with their views and everything. I opened the Cebeci Student Dormitory the other day. When I came to Ankara when I was a student in my youth, I would stay with my friends for one night or two nights in Cebeci Student Dormitory. They cannot be compared with that country. Here we demolished it, now we made it brand new. We opened it, we walked around the rooms. At that time it was a men’s hostel. Now it has become a girls’ dormitory for 4,000 people. I mean, they say ‘Concrete or something’, but come, go, see, look, what is it? They don’t have a problem saying, ‘What kind of a home is it really, let me see this’.

On the day that Mr. Kemal came to TEKNOFEST, Deputy Minister of Industry and Technology Mehmet Fatih Kacır actually gave him a good lesson while he was showing him; He told her quite a few things but he doesn’t understand.

There was a lot of talk about TOKİ’s supply on social housing and land. On the second day, applications exceeded 2 million. The high demand is an indication that there is a great need. Is there a trend that this supply will increase further in the future?

We do not have a problem with the supply. Now we have seen the supply-demand balance. That is, the supply-demand balance seems to be in the direction of demand. So, it means that a move can be made again after the election. By then, the roughness of these constructions will be finished, and 50-60 percent will be progressed. Because it takes 1.5-2 years to complete the work there. On the one hand, of course, the drawing of lots and then the settlements begin. In the meantime, we will start the second phase of the work. There is no shortage of money stamps here. Of course, the intensity of demand here is obvious. That’s why I say, God willing, we will start a new phase after the election, hopefully. Because we don’t have any problems with the land. As long as there is no problem at the point of land, as long as there is a power to do business. We are the power to do the work. Of course, Mr. Kemal and his followers will make something up for him. I also told my friends, ‘Friends, let’s not linger, let’s start laying the groundwork immediately according to planning all over Turkey. I said, ‘You won’t wait until the end of the year. I gave the instruction and before the end of the year, we will lay the foundations and start the construction according to how much we are doing in which city right now.

There is a criticism that these will not be done. Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has a tweet; He says he supports the Social Housing Project, but these are empty promises. There are criticisms that the 500 lira received for the application will not be refunded and that this is an election investment.

This isn’t the first time it’s been done. We have already built and delivered 1 million 170 thousand houses through TOKİ. There are people living in TOKİ residences right now, they are praying for us. Here we recently delivered in Esenler and visited those apartments. We have proof. We have created the proof.

The New Economic Model began to bear fruit. Recently, inside and outside, ‘Where does Turkey get this money?’ questions come. You just said, ‘money is not a problem’. Where does Turkey find these coins?

We work, when you work, money comes. Confidence in our country also comes from abroad. Treasury and Finance, the Central Bank join hands to grow a productive economy. Because these steps we have taken are not the result of consumption economy or waste economy; on the contrary, it is a result of the economy of production. As a result of the production economy, we have now started to collect the revenue. As of now, for example, the reserve of our Central Bank is around 115 billion dollars. Now, if it’s up to them, they show the Central Bank’s reserves as if they have been zeroed, but the picture is not like that.

The scandalous words of Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Mayor Tunç Soyer on the anniversary of Izmir’s liberation on September 9, drew a lot of reaction and were criticized a lot. You criticize too. In other words, it was almost as if he blamed the Ottomans and our ancestors, not the invading Greece. He stated as if ‘Greece did almost nothing, the Ottomans were responsible for everything that happened’. I’m curious about your opinion on this.

This man has no direction. This is compass confused and far from decency. A person who tries to express his history with insults cannot be a child of this nation. This nation is remembered by this ancestor. We are proud of this ancestor right now. But unfortunately, beyond being in politics, the fact that there are people who do this even though they say they are party leaders and even though they say they are historians, is really a mental eclipse. It is never acceptable to make such ascriptions to a Sultan Abdulhamid, who ruled the Ottoman Empire for 33 years, without being embarrassed or bored. There is also a person named Merdan Yanardag. He also uses immoral expressions and insults about the Ottoman Empire. These statements are definitely a hate crime. Of course, we have to go beyond them. So this square is not that empty. They will need to know this. If we are to be worthy of our ancestors, we must do what is necessary within the framework of the law.