Sermon included coded message to give Erdoğan AIDS - commentator

A sermon by preacher-in-exile Fethullah Gülen, who stands accused of leading a movement that sought to overthrow the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in a coup attempt in July 2016, contains a coded message to kill Erdoğan using the AIDS virus (HIV), pro-government Star newspaper commentator Ahmet Kekeç wrote.

A recent sermon by Gülen, Kekeç said, contained the words “he will go… there is no other way, he will go…”, which was a veiled reference to Erdoğan.

“It could be a fly... It could by a virus as with the Nimrod of another age… It could be an AIDS virus… It could be obsession. That Nimrod, to whom being laid out on the floor did not even cross his mind, suddenly found himself splayed out on it…” Kekeç quoted Gülen as saying in his latest sermon, giving a list of other times when Gülen had predicted that Erdoğan could suddenly expire from various maladies.

Nimrod, a figure who features in ancient Abrahamic scriptures, is seen in Islam as an archetype of a repressive dictator: another hint that the figure being referenced is Erdoğan.

“This means that they have set to a new project to carry off Erdoğan and the religious leaders are giving this ‘good news’. The weapons in this new assassination (attempt) are the AIDS virus…” Kekeç said.

It is unclear whether Gülen is recommending an assassination attempt of this nature and not just employing a form of wishful thinking to keep up the morale of his adherents, given that his organisation has fallen apart under the pressure put on it by the Turkish government around the world.

HIV is also far from being an appropriate weapon for those wishing a sudden death upon an adversary: not only does it usually destroy the immune system slowly, but new retroviral drugs can now effectively halt its progress in most cases.