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Presidential elections in Turkey: What will remain unchanged?

02 July 2014 [10:27] - TODAY.AZ
By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

The candidacy of Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for the country's president was officially unveiled today. Nomination of his candidacy was something everyone expected but waited for patiently.

Indeed, initially it was known that Erdogan would be nominated.

With this knowledge, the country's opposition decided to use a "trump card". The Turkish opposition - the Republican People's Party (CHP) and the National Action Party (MHP) - nominated the former head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu for the presidency.

Many in Turkey do not consider Ihsanoglu a very suitable person for the office of president. Yet, it would be wrong to say the oppositional candidate is weak. Gulen movement members, who lost the municipal election and who are the first enemies of both the opposition and the ruling party, will surely cast their votes for Ihsanoglu, and this will definitely affect the ratio of votes in the election.

The nomination of the ex-OIC head Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu has one detail that has slipped everyone's attention. This is the fact that the Islamic factor in modern Turkey is strong enough - something which with the opposition agreed. As for more serious obstacles facing Ihsanoglu, this is the non-support of his candidacy by the Alevis of Turkey.

Many political experts believe that Erdogan's candidacy does not mean his victory in the election. But this view is not entirely justified.

First of all, it is necessary to consider that the presidential election to be held in Turkey on August 10 is seriously different from any previous presidential election. According to the results of the referendum held in 2007, as of 2014 the Turkish President will be chosen not for seven but for five years, and not by parliament but by the people.

The Turkish opposition candidate, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu is not known as a politician in Turkey. Furthermore, he does not meet the expectations of Ankara on the Syrian issue, that is, he does not support military intervention in Syria. All of these factors minimize his chance in the presidential election. Many analysts believe that after the nomination of Ihsanoglu, there will be no need for a second round in the elections, as Erdogan will be elected on the first.

Today, it is not Erdogan`s victory in the election, but the question of who will lead the ruling party that is being discussed in Turkey, even in opposition circles.

There are many people who claim that after the election of Erdogan as president, there will be a political gap in the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

But hardly, the AKP after overcoming many political problems that have arisen in the country will be able to cope with this.

The results of the presidential election will be an impetus for major changes in many areas. If Erdogan wins the upcoming election, one of the important and priority issues will be the growth of the Turkish economy.

Changes are expected in many areas, but Ankara will not refuse the plans of Turkish authorities for 2023, when the 100th anniversary of the proclamation of the republic will be marked.

Rufiz Hafizoglu is the head of Trend Arabic News Service

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