Turkey's Opposition Takes the Shine off Erdogan's Victory
MIN READApr 1, 2019 | 21:24 GMT
Supporters of the main opposition Republican People's Party's (CHP) mayoral candidate in Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu, wave flags during a rally ahead of upcoming local elections on March 29, 2019. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan appears to have suffered a chastening defeat in Ankara and Istanbul.
(YASIN AKGUL/AFP/Getty Images)
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won yet another election on March 31, but few victories have been as pyrrhic as this. Twelve parties competed for thousands of local government posts at the municipal and provincial level. According to preliminary results (official results might not be available for many weeks) the Justice and Development Party (AKP), an Islamist and populist party that has governed Turkey since 2002, gained 44.3 percent of the votes in mayoral contests, ahead of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), a secularist party, with 30.1 percent. Trailing behind was the AKP's right-wing ally, the National Movement Party (MHP) at 7.31 percent; the CHP's nationalist ally, the Good Party, at 7.45 percent; as well as the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) at 4.24 percent. The AKP also won 41.61 percent of the overall vote for the provincial assemblies across the country, far ahead of the MHP, which...