A Useful Guide to Understanding the Hizmet-AK Party Tension

Mustafa Yeşil, head of the Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV), whose honorary president is Fethullah Gulen, talks about the reasons for the increasing tension between the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government and the Hizmet movement, which conducts praiseworthy activities in Turkey and around the globe with inspiration from well-respected Turkish-Islamic scholar Gülen.

Yeşil responded to some criticisms of the Hizmet movement as follows.

The Hizmet movement is part of civil society

What is the overall perspective of the Hizmet movement on politics and political parties?

Fethullah Gulen Answered WSJ's Questions

Fethullah Gulen candidly answered the questions of The Wall Street Journal.

By Joe Parkinson and Jay Solomon

1.       The Prime Minister has repeatedly attacked you and Hizmet in recent weeks. Do you believe that your alliance with his faction of the AKP is now definitively at an end?

If we can talk about an alliance, it was around shared values of democracy, universal human rights and freedoms — never for political parties or candidates. In 2010 constitutional referendum I said that if these democratic reforms, which are in line with European Union’s requirements for membership, were done by CHP before, I would have supported them.

A broad spectrum of Turkish people, including Hizmet participants, supported AKP for democratizing reforms, for ending the military tutelage over politics and for moving Turkey forward in the EU accession process. We have always supported what we believed to be right and in line with democratic principles. But we have also criticized what we saw as wrong and contrary to those principles.