Ruling Justice Development Party’s (AKP) Sivas, a city located in the eastern area of Central Anatolia, Turkey, MP Ismet Yilmaz promised heaven for the voters of his party.
“You have an elder brother Hilmi Bilgin, I am asking your support for him. I believe that your support for Bilgin in the city, will be one of the certificates of your acquittal on the judgment day,” former Defence and Education Minister Ismet Yilmaz said in a live question-answer session in an election programme organised by AKP youth grass-roots.
As senior politician Ismet Yilmaz’s words spread so quickly in social networks, many Turks reacted to Yilmaz’s comment with #ismetyilmaz hashtag. “Aren’t you scared of being cursed by God?” @Aberrinakgun tweeted. “Saint Ismet, please open the door of Heaven for me,” @yilmaz_ismet58 ridiculed Ismet Yilmaz.
“Those people like Ismet Yilmaz will give an account for their 16-year-long persecution; as they violate orphan’s rights, doing corruption, using religion for their the worldly life and helping non-Muslim oppressors to slaughter Muslims. He also knows his fate but he has no worries, as he no more fears Allah,” @yilmaz_ismet58 harshly criticised, Yilmaz.
@varolesen criticised Yilmaz as well and AKP by saying that, “they were distributing coal and macaroni before, now they give title-deed of Heaven.”
The number of atheists in Turkey is on the rise
KRT Kültür TV commented from Twitter that Ismet Yilmaz statement is scandalous. While AKP uses Islam to convince conservative Muslim Turkish society for the upcoming 31st March local election, the latest statistics show that the atheist number is on the sharp increase due to a reaction against AKP rule. “Atheists numbers increased from one percent to three percent, and those who call themselves religious fell from 55 percent to 51 percent, in a country known of its ‘99 percent Muslim majority,” Turkish research and consultancy firm KONDA’s latest research poll shows.
Turkey will go to local elections on March 31 of this year. That will be the last chain of a series of elections in recent years before a general election scheduled to be held in 2023.