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In apparent reference to the silence of Turkey’s banking watchdog over money laundering claims made by pro-government dailies last month, the general manager of Turkey’s largest lender, II BankasI, has said state bodies responsible for regulating the banking industry should have spoken out about the claims. “I want to put it clearly: We expect the necessary statement about that subject [suspicions of illegal money transfer] from the relevant authoritie

In apparent reference to the silence of Turkeyand#39s banking watchdog over money laundering claims made by pro-government dailies last month, the general manager of Turkeyand#39s largest lender, II BankasI, has said state bodies responsible for regulating the banking industry should have spoken out about the claims.

andldquoI want to put it clearly: We expect the necessary statement about that subject [suspicions of illegal money transfer] from the relevant authorities whose responsibilities and tasks are to do so. Not for us, not because we need that.

We expect this just because their duties and responsibilities require it. We expect [a statement] not for us, but for the truth,andrdquo II BankasI General Manager Adnan Bali said on Monday.

Several pro-government media outlets claimed in mid-February that the main opposition Republican Peopleand#39s Party (CHP) had helped transfer large sums of money from II BankasI accounts to bank accounts in Switzerland and Israel. The holders of these bank accounts later allegedly sent the money in smaller amounts to CHP bank accounts in Turkey.

Following the claims, the lender vowed to file a lawsuit against the dailies and said the bank abides by all the laws regulating the banking sector and has never been involved in the alleged cash transfers. The Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK), however, has remained silent about the claims since then.

Speaking on the sidelines of a business event jointly held by the Danduumlnya daily and II BankasI in the western province of Izmir on Monday, Bali slammed those who have been circulating media reports aimed at intimidating the bank, adding that no one should try to tear down prominent institutions like II BankasI for their own purposes.

Bali maintained there is no ambiguity in the shareholder structure of the bank.

He also said the CHP is represented on the board of II BankasI just because of the will of Mustafa Kemal Atatanduumlrk, the founder of the modern Turkish Republic.

II BankasI was established on Atatanduumlrkand#39s orders in 1924.

Atatanduumlrk provided TL 250,000 of the total TL 1 million capital used to found the bank.

The CHP enjoys only voting rights of its shares in the bank under the will of Atatanduumlrk and the dividends on the shares are equally paid to the Turkish Language Association (TDK) and the Turkish Historical Society (TTK).

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SOURCE: Today’s Zaman