A latest wiretap leak of alleged phone conversations between Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his son is sending shockwaves through Turkish politics, prompting emergency meetings in Ankara.
The latest leaks – allegedly of conversations Erdoğan had with his son about hiding funds as police were launching massive anti-corruption raids in December – prompted the premier to hold a late-night meeting with the head of the National Intelligence Organisation.
The prime minister's office released a statement saying the tapes were faked and were the result of a "montage”.
The four phone conversations are the latest in a series of leaked voice recordings between Erdoğan and his allies, including businessmen and media representatives. The Hürriyet Daily News could not verify the authenticity of the recording, which was uploaded onto YouTube and received over 1.2 million hits in 12 hours.
The main opposition Republican People’s Party called on the government to immediately resign, saying it had lost all legitimacy.
Nationalist Movement Party leader Devlet Bahçeli joined the calls for the government’s resignation, describing the recordings as “mindblowing”.
“It has been reported that Prime Minister Erdoğan called his son, Bilal, asking him to gather with his brother, Burak, uncle Mustafa and brother-in-law Berat to get rid of all the stolen money as soon as possible from his house," Bahçeli said in a written statement. "It is understood that the prime minister urgently and insistently asked for 2.2 billion [Turkish Lira] of dirty money hidden in different addresses to be dispersed.”
The authenticity of the leaks was categorically rejected by the prime minister's office in a statement.
“The claims of a phone conversation between our prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and his son as voice recordings leaked onto the internet this afternoon are an immoral product of montage and completely false,” the statement said.
“Those who stage this dirty plot against the Turkish prime minister will be brought to justice and render an account,” it added.
Date created : 2014-02-25