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    Baykal denies suggestions of enormous personal wealth

    Hürriyet Haber
    24.01.2006 - 10:41 | Son Güncelleme: 24.01.2006 - 10:41

    An argument involving the personal wealth of political leaders in Turkey has been renewed, with an article in the Yeni Safak newspaper indicating that main opposition Republican People's (CHP) Party leader Deniz Baykal has one million YTL in his bank account. The newspaper, which is known for its closeness to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, also relied on statements from Treasury Secretary Kemal Unakitan, which implied that the CHP itself had around 150 million YTL in its coffers.

    In response, Baykal invited the Treasury Secretary to make an open investigation into his personal bank accounts, saying "My account is currently at 132,000 YTL....I invite the Treasury Secretary to look immediately into not only my own, but the Prime Minister's personal accounts." In addition, Baykal also said that the CHP had not 150 million YTL, but only 25 million YTL in its accounts. While Unakitan denied the news as it was presented in the Yeni Safak newspaper, he questioned the speed with which Baykal had leapt to reject it, saying "I am confused by why Baykal would make such a hurried response." The general news editor of the Yeni Safak newspaper, Mustafa Karaalioglu, said "The news is true. The Treasury Minister made these statements in front of a parliamentary group. Tomorrow we will print Baykal's response."
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