The Turkish Medical Association announced publicly on Sunday it was worried about the “emotional well-being” of the country’s scandal-ridden Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
In a written statement, the association, which includes a majority of the country’s doctors, said Erdogan’s use of “polarizing, excluding and ‘otherifying’ language” suggested the premier was unwell.
The association noted Erdogan’s recent comments about 15-year-old Berkin Elvan, who died last week after a nine-month coma cause by being hit in the head by a tear gas canister shot by a police officer last summer.
At a Justice and Development Party (AKP) election rally in Diyarbakır on March 14, Erdogan said Elvan belonged to a terror organization and had covered his face with a scarf, making it impossible for the police officer who hit him to have known his age, Turkey’s Today’s Zaman website reported.
“Under normal circumstances, no one would call a 15-year-old boy who was shot in the head by a police officer and who died after struggling for his life for 269 days a terrorist,” read the association’s statement. “Under normal circumstances, no one would define marbles placed on the grave of a boy who loved games as ‘iron balls.’ Under normal circumstances, no one would make participants at an election rally jeer at a mother who buried her son only two days ago.
“We are doctors,” added the statement. “We can accurately assess the emotional well-being of a person, and we are worried about the emotional well-being of Prime Minister Erdogan. We are terribly worried. We are worried for him, his family and the entire country. And we would like to share our worry with the public.”