Center for American Progress

The Widespread Implications of Turkey’s Upcoming Election

The Widespread Implications of Turkey’s Upcoming Election

The outcome of the election—possibly the last until 2019—may determine the future of the Turkish Constitution of 1982, the position of religion in the public square, and the quality of Turkish democracy.

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idea_bulbTurkey will hold a crucial general election on June 7. The Justice and Development Party, or AKP, faces the first real threat to its single-party control over the Grand National Assembly in its 13 years ruling the country. For the first time since the Republic of Turkey’s formation, a Kurdish political party could enter parliament in force. This could seriously complicate the AKP’s path to a parliamentary majority but might also bring hope for a final resolution of Turkey’s long struggle to peacefully integrate its Kurdish minority. The vote is also likely to decide if Turkey will continue to be dominated by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whose personal ambition to build a stronger presidency and solidify his hold on power has shaped the campaign. And the election result could see the ongoing Kurdish peace process derailed by a surge in support for the far-right Nationalist Movement Party, or MHP. Additionally, clashes between Kurds and state security forces in the wake of the vote could derail election results, particularly if electoral fraud is suspected.

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