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why did Erdogan determine to deliver ahead the election by a month?

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President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who’s searching for a 3rd time period, confirmed on Sunday his need to prepare the presidential election on Might 14, a month sooner than anticipated. What’s behind this maneuver as an election which guarantees to be one of many tightest in latest many years in Turkey approaches? Response parts.

He’s the grasp of the clocks: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, candidate for his personal succession, confirmed on Sunday January 22 his need to prepare presidential and legislative elections on Might 14 after a number of weeks of hypothesis round a brand new electoral calendar.

The date owes nothing to probability. It refers back to the victory of Adnan Menderes, icon of the conservative proper, in 1950 in the course of the first free elections in Turkey after three many years of a single celebration.

“Adnan Menderes was the primary to win in opposition to the Kemalists and put an finish to this lengthy interval of governance by the ‘secularists’ as they are saying in Turkey”, particulars Adel Bakawan, affiliate researcher within the Turkey and Center East program of the Institute. French for Worldwide Relations (IFRI). “It’s a reference for essentially the most conservative classes of Turkish society, the bottom of Recep Tayyip Erdogan who seeks right here to ship a message to his voters”.

>> To learn additionally: Six months earlier than the presidential election, secularism is as soon as once more stirring up passions

To justify this transformation of calendar, the Turkish president explains that he needed to keep away from that the preliminary date of the ballot doesn’t telescope the group of college exams. In actuality, this maneuver would permit the “Reis” to avoid wasting himself a attainable authorized battle round his re-election.

In idea, the nation’s structure permits solely two consecutive presidential phrases. Nonetheless, it gives for a derogation “if the Parliament decides to resume the elections in the course of the second time period of the president”. With a view to name for an early poll, “a three-fifths majority of Parliament is required, that’s to say 360 votes out of 600”, remembers the newspaper Le Monde.

To validate this transformation, Recep Tayyip Erdogan will subsequently have to seek out the assist of no less than 25 elected representatives of the opposition, the AKP and the Nationalist Motion Get together, the coalition in energy, with solely 355 seats. “However for the second Erdogan is attempting to indicate that this isn’t an anticipation of the elections however a easy administrative adjustment in relation to a busy schedule”, notes Elise Massicard, researcher at CNRS and Turkey specialist, in line with whom “nothing has been completed but”.

A low recognition score

Past this authorized imbroglio, the candidate president would search to reap the benefits of a extra favorable dynamic within the polls whereas his recognition score is at its lowest.

“The polls should not favorable however there was a slight enchancment in latest weeks linked to worldwide politics”, assures Elise Massicard who cites the position of Turkey on the file of the export of Ukrainian cereals or the opposition to Sweden’s entry into NATO. “It has been relayed lots within the Turkish media to reward the ability of Erdogan”, provides the researcher.

If the “Reis” shines on the worldwide scene, it’s in nice issue domestically: the financial system is idling, the pound has once more misplaced practically 30% of its worth final yr in opposition to the greenback and inflation galloping makes life unattainable for tens of millions of Turks. A part of public opinion additionally criticizes him for his authoritarian drift that started in 2014 and has been strengthened since an tried coup in 2016.

Added to that is the fragile query of the presence of three.6 million Syrians on Turkish soil. A beneficiant reception coverage needed by Erdogan within the identify of “Islamic brotherhood”, remembers Adel Bakawan. “Nonetheless, these refugees are actually perceived as a burden and even an enemy by a part of Turkish public opinion”, within the context of the financial disaster.

Overturn “the desk of Six”

To dam Erdogan’s street to his third time period nonetheless removed from over, a motley opposition gathered inside a platform referred to as “the desk of Six”, bringing collectively six political events led by the CHP (Republican Folks’s Get together) , makes an attempt to nominate a single candidate.

Its goal: to place an finish to the ultra-presidential regime put in place by Erdogan with the constitutional referendum of 2017, permitting him particularly to legislate by decree and to maintain management of the appointment of senior magistrates.

“However for the second, the opposition camp is unable to result in an settlement. Bringing ahead the date of the election is subsequently a method of taking them unexpectedly and limiting their room for maneuver in these negotiations”, analyzes Adel Bakawan.

Particularly since the most effective positioned opposition candidate, Ekrem İmamoglu, the mayor of Istanbul, is not an possibility since his conviction in December to 2 and a half years in jail for having “insulted” political leaders. The latter, who appealed his conviction, had then denounced “a political affair”.

If Erdogan reveals right here that he has misplaced none of his political talent, this transformation within the electoral calendar illustrates a type of feverishness for the robust man of the nation who, for the primary time in 20 years, is not fully in command of his destiny.

>> See additionally: Recep Tayyip Erdogan, twenty years of divisive energy

“This election is way from a foregone conclusion”, confirms Elise Massicard. The Turkish energy, which has broad entry to public sources in addition to to the nationwide media to marketing campaign, “appears subsequently able to resort to all kinds of stratagems and to play all of the playing cards at their disposal to win”, estimates the researcher.

“Regardless of all the pieces that has been mentioned and all his difficulties, Erdogan stays the favourite,” choose Adel Bakawan. “Nonetheless, it’s weakened and now there’s a doubt” in regards to the consequence of this presidential election.


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