Istanbul polls launch a new era for Turkish politics

Dünya Executive - - POLITICS - HURRIYET JUNE 24 SERKAN DEMIRTAS

The growing vote difference between Imamoglu and the AK Party’s Binali Yıldırım has proven that even those who had cast their votes for the latter in the March polls have changed their side on Sunday. That’s how Imamoglu increased his votes by more than half a million in less than six weeks. The second point worth mentioning is the deepening clumsiness on the AK Party side when it comes to generating new policies and strategies to change people’s perspectiv­es. The latest Kurdish move, for example, has been observed to be very destructiv­e. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will certainly have to think over the main reasons for this defeat in Istanbul, twice in less than three months. Istanbul, with its more than 10 million voters, represents one-fifth of Turkey, and any growing political trend in this city would resonate in the rest of the country. Plus, Erdogan will have to take the CHP’s Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu much more seriously. Another serious problem for Erdogan wouldemerg­e in the event that dissidents like Abdullah Gul, Ali Babacan and Ahmet Davutoglu decide to form a political party and attract a number of parliament­arians from the AK Party. This result in Istanbul is believed to further encourage Gul and Babacan to accelerate their work to institutio­nalize their movement.

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