Transcript: ErdoÄŸan at Davos

Muslim Matters

Transcript: ErdoÄŸan at Davos

[After a speech of Prime Minister ErdoÄŸan of 15.58 minutes]


Shimon Peres: I have much respect to Mr. Prime Minister [pointing to ErdoÄŸan], but they must put things as they really are. Let me start with democracy first of all. Who was elected by the Palestiniains? Not Hamas, but Mr. Abbas. Sixty-two percent of Palestinians voted for him. … Hamas participate in elections but have a very unique idea about democracy … You go through the elections, after the elections you can start to shoot, kill and threaten, finish. Democracy is not matter of elections [as he turns to ErdoÄŸan]. It is a civilization …

…The cease-fire idea in our view is very strange [turning to ErdoÄŸan]. We never started fire. We told the Palestinians time and again [raising his voice], ’Don’t fire, there won’t be fire’ … They broke it … You know what it means everyday hundreds of rockets falling at random. A million people have had to take shelter.

Hamas leader Meshaal says, “Israel reacted too strongly,” but what do you expect us to do. I do not understand. What would any country do? What would you do [pointing his finger at ErdoÄŸan], if rockets fell on Istanbul every night? … Gaza is not our enemy. People in Gaza are not our enemy. We are for restoring life in Gaza, but without dictators.

[Ignatius warns Peres about time in 19th minute of his speech]
Our aim is peace not war.

[Peres’ whole speech lasts 21.02 minutes. Applause rises from the audience]

Ignatius: This has been a powerful and passionate debate. It is a debate that can go on tonight for hours but we already passed our closing time…

ErdoÄŸan: [In English] Excuse me.

Ignatius: Mr. Prime Minister [touching his shoulder] I would apologise to Mr. ErdoÄŸan…

ErdoÄŸan: [In English] One minute … one minute [touching Ignatius’ arm] One minute. No way out [in Turkish, applause rises from the audience]

Ignatius: Only a minute.

ErdoÄŸan: Mr. Peres, you are older than I am. But the volume of your voice is too high. And I know this is because of the guilt psychology. My voice will not be that loud. Know this like that. When it is time to kill, you know how to kill well. I know well how you kill children on beaches, how you shoot them. I remember two former prime ministers in your country who said they felt very happy when they were able to enter Palestine on tanks. And you gave me numbers. I would give out a name too [referring to the prime minister saying he/she felt happy when entering Palestine], if maybe some of you are wondering. I also condemn those who applaud for this cruelty [referring to the audience’s applause for Peres]. Because applauding those people killing children is a crime against humanity, I believe. We cannot ignore a truth here. I took many notes here…
[Ignatius touches Erdoğan’s shoulder to warn him to end his speech]

ErdoÄŸan: But I do not have the opportunity to answer all these notes. I would say two things.

Ignatius: Mr. Prime Minister we cannot start the debate again.
[Pushing each others’ arm]

ErdoÄŸan: Do not interrupt me.

Ignatius: We really need to let people go to dinner.

ErdoÄŸan: The Old Testament’s sixth amendment says ’Thou shalt not kill.’ There is murder here. Gilad Atzmon says that Israeli barbarism is greater than cruelty. He is a Jew. Besides this, Avi Shlaim, international relations professor at Oxford University, who had served in Israeli army, says in The Guardian…

Ignatius: I want to ask you…

ErdoÄŸan: … that Israel has earned the name ’bandit state.’

Ignatius: [interrupting ErdoÄŸan’s speech] … Turn this over to our host …

ErdoÄŸan: [to Ignatius] Thank you very much, thank you very much. Davos comes to an end for me from now on. I will not come to Davos ever again. Know this in that way. You do not let me speak. You allow [Peres] to speak for 25 minutes, me for 12 minutes. [ErdoÄŸan stands, collects his things and walks off stage]


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