Deputy President Of Higher Education Board [YOK] Resigns From His Position

Professor Isa Esme, deputy president of the Higher Education Board (YOK), resigned yesterday from his post, which he has held since 2005. Esme had been on leave since Dec. 28 when he was told by [then] newly appointed YOK President Yusuf Ziya Ozcan, not to exercise his authority as deputy president of the Council.

In his announcement Esme said, “During the YOK general council meeting [yesterday] I realized that the majority of the members of the council - the composition of which changed as a result of the this week's appointments by President Abdullah Gul - would not give the necessary support for me to fulfill my duties, and that Ozcan is likely to work with new deputy presidents in a more coherent way”. Professor Esme said that he had resigned his post as deputy president but would try to make his contributions as a council member.

Another YOK deputy president, Professor Aybar Ertepinar had resigned from his post in December, when President Gul appointed Ozcan as YOK president.

Source: AA, Anatolia News Agency, February 7-8, 2008


President Abdullah Gul Appoints Four New Members To YOK, Tipping Its Balance

Following the recent appointment of the pro-AKP Prof. Yusuf Ozcan as head of the powerful High Education Board [YOK], Turkish President Gul yesterday filled four of the five of its vacancies, tipping the balance in favor of AKP-appointed, pro-turban and Islamic inclined professors.

One of the newly appointed members Prof. Durmus Gunay is known to be a Fethullahist who prior to July 2007 elections was an AKP candidate for MP from Isparta. Gunay who was affiliated with some Islamist associations, has written extensively on Islamic matters and one of his articles is titled “The Tragic Journey From Madrassas To Universities”.

Another appointee Prof. Berrak Kurtulus has written about Islamic ethics, defending the virtues of Islamic thought and practices in a Sharia economy.

The 21 member Board [YOK] now has 20 members, 11 of which are proponents of AKP government and its policies.

Source: Cumhuriyet, Turkey, February 6, 2008


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