Turks set to vote in crucial presidential and parliamentary polls


Erdogan seeks to keep his seat with increased powers after the vote that will transform the country’s political system.

Istanbul, Turkey – Turkey’s presidential candidates have held their final rallies in advance of Sunday’s crucial double elections, which will see voters pick both an executive president with increased powers and the new members of the country’s parliament.

The snap polls will open at 8am (05:00 GMT) across Turkey and close at 5pm (14:00 GMT), in contrast to previous elections in which eastern provinces started voting one hour earlier.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday addressed several different rallies in Istanbul, urging people to get out and vote.

“The presidency requires experience,” said Erdogan, in power since 2003, as he attacked the opposition for lacking vision.

His main challenger, Muharrem Ince, also addressed supporters in Turkey’s largest city on the last day of campaigning.

“Tomorrow, we will have a completely different Turkey. Tomorrow, discrimination will come to an end,” said Ince, of the main opposition centre-left Republican People’s Party (CHP).

Constitutional changes

Overall, 56.39 million Turkish citizens are eligible to cast their ballots – 53.34 million in Turkey and 3.05 million abroad.

Voting at diplomatic missions outside the country ended on June 19, while ballot boxes at entry points to Turkey will remain open until the elections end.

The voting on Sunday will be the first time that presidential and parliamentary polls are held simultaneously, in line with the last year’s constitutional changes that will transform the country’s parliamentary system to an executive presidential one.

The changes will largely enter into force after the elections. They are set to hand the next president significant executive powers and will abolish the prime ministry as well as remove the monitoring role of parliament, among others.

The new system will allow the presidential office to appoint vice presidents, ministers, high-level officials and senior judges. The president will also be able to dissolve parliament, issue executive decrees, and impose a state of emergency.

Erdogan, who hopes to keep his seat with increased powers and secure a strong parliamentary majority, entered the race in the face of a depreciating lira and straining relations with the West.

New alliances

Originally scheduled for November 3, 2019, the vote was moved forward by more than 18 months in April by the parliament, which is controlled by Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party)

The AK Party joined forces with the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) to create the People’s Alliance for the polls. Erdogan is the bloc’s joint presidential candidate.

To challenge Erdogan’s alliance, the opposition formed the diverse Nation Alliance, which includes the CHP, the debuting right-wing Good Party (IYI) and the ultraconservative Felicity Party (SP), with backing from the minor centre-right Democrat Party (DP).

The Nation Alliance parties have fielded individual presidential candidates, including CHP’s Ince, whose numbers have been climbing in opinion polls, and Meral Aksener, the popular right-wing politician who leads IYI Party.

Both blocs were established in line with a recently introduced legislation that allows political parties to form election alliances in parliamentary polls. Such alliances were previously banned.

According to a law passed by parliament on March 3, an officially formed bloc can jointly pass Turkey’s unusually high 10 percent parliamentary election threshold.

However, citizens will still vote for the individual parties on the ballots. The legislation is aimed at helping smaller parties enter parliament by joining forces with larger ones.

The pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), the only other party that has chances to pass the threshold, has entered elections without an alliance. Its presidential candidate is Selahattin Demirtas, a popular Kurdish politician who has been in jail since 2016 accused of terror-related charges.

A second round of voting will take place on July 7, unless a candidate gets more than 50 percent on Sunday. Presidential hopefuls from the Nation Alliance, as well Demirtas, have declared that if the race goes to a runoff vote, they will back any candidate running against Erdogan.

The elections are taking place under a state of emergency, in place since July 2016 following a failed deadly coup blamed by the government on the movement of Fethullah Gulen, a US-based self-exiled religious leader.

Turkey’s Western allies have repeatedly condemned the Turkish government’s detentions and purges after the coup attempt.

Local and international rights groups accuse the government of using the coup bid as a pretext to silence opposition in the country.

Erdogan’s government says that the purges and detentions are in line with the rule of law and aim to remove Gulen’s supporters from state institutions and other parts of society.


  1. Pretty section of content. I just stumbled upon your website and in accession capital to assert that I get
    in fact enjoyed account your blog posts. Any way
    I’ll be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access consistently fast.

  2. Hi there! I understand this is kind of off-topic but I needed to
    ask. Does building a well-established website
    like yours require a large amount of work? I’m completely new to blogging however I do write in my diary daily.
    I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my experience and feelings online.

    Please let me know if you have any kind of recommendations
    or tips for new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

  3. Aw, this was a very nice post. Taking a few minutes and
    actual effort to create a very good article… but what can I say… I hesitate
    a whole lot and never manage to get nearly anything done.

  4. Awesome issues here. I am very glad to peer your post.
    Thanks a lot and I am having a look ahead to
    contact you. Will you please drop me a e-mail?

  5. Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I am inspired!
    Extremely helpful information specifically the final section :
    ) I care for such information a lot. I used to be looking for this certain info for a
    very lengthy time. Thank you and good luck.

  6. Hiya! Quick question that’s completely off topic. Do
    you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when browsing from my
    iphone4. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to fix this issue.
    If you have any suggestions, please share. Many thanks!

  7. Hey there! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us so I came
    to check it out. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this
    to my followers! Outstanding blog and superb design.

  8. Thanks on your marvelous posting! I quite enjoyed reading it, you might be a
    great author. I will make sure to bookmark your blog and will eventually come back down the
    road. I want to encourage you continue your great job, have a
    nice day!

  9. First off I would like to say excellent blog! I had a quick question in which
    I’d like to ask if you do not mind. I was interested to know how you center yourself and clear your head prior to writing.
    I’ve had a hard time clearing my mind in getting my
    ideas out there. I do enjoy writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes
    are wasted just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or hints?

  10. The other day, while I was at work, my sister stole my iphone and tested to see if it can survive a twenty five foot drop, just so she can be a
    youtube sensation. My apple ipad is now destroyed and she has 83 views.

    I know this is entirely off topic but I had to share it with someone!
    pof natalielise

  11. Hi would you mind letting me know which hosting company you’re utilizing?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 different browsers and I must say this blog loads a lot
    faster then most. Can you recommend a good hosting provider at a fair price?
    Thanks, I appreciate it!

  12. Somebody essentially lend a hand to make seriously articles I might
    state. That is the first time I frequented your website page and thus far?

    I amazed with the analysis you made to make this actual submit incredible.
    Excellent job!

  13. Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but after going through many of the articles I realized it’s
    new to me. Regardless, I’m definitely pleased I discovered it and I’ll be
    bookmarking it and checking back frequently!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here