* Photograph: Utku Uçrak - Ankara/AA
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Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) and the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) candidate for the İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality Binali Yıldırım has met with parliamentary reporters on the occasion of January 10 Working Journalists' Day.
Claiming that the debates around his mayoral nomination without resigning as the Speaker of the TBMM are not legal but political, Yıldırım has made the following remarks:
"The place for a resolution is the YSK (Supreme Election Council). If there is an unlawfulness in terms of Constitution or other laws, the authority is YSK.
"Politically, this debate is intended to wear us out. I am not in any business that is not lawful.
"According to the Article 94 of the Constitution, political activities cannot be done. We are not doing any political activity. Election is not a political activity.
"The Article 94 of the Constitution as well as the Law on the Elections of Local Administrations indirectly regard the Parliamentary Speaker among those who do not need to resign.
"I won't stray from my path, the voters will make the decision.
"All those who will participate in the elections should resign, then. The parliament should make this regulation and end the debates.
"If we are talking about inequality, then everybody should resign; MPs, mayors, all candidates should leave their posts."
The Article 94 of the Constitution says, "The Speaker and the Deputy Speakers of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) cannot join the activities of the political party that they are a member of, in or outside of the Parliament and the discussions in the Parliament except when it is necessitated by their duty."
Binali Yıldırım also commented on the debates on January 7, saying "Where there is law, the ethics is not spoken. Law is spoken in a state of law." (EKN/VK)