“The election of the mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality has now gained a meaning far beyond the election of the mayor,” he said speaking at an Eid al-Fitr celebration at his party’s headquarters.
He recalled that the results of the March 31 elections have led to intense debate in Turkey; even European countries have engaged in these discussions. He suggested that European countries are trying to manipulate the electoral process.
The “collaborators” in both in Turkey and abroad are trying to manipulate the June 23 elections to produce different results, he suggested.
Istanbul residents who are authorized to vote but may be in different parts of Turkey for the Eid al-Fitr feast, should return home no later than June 21 to vote in the election, he said.
Bahçeli also welcomed a planned joint TV interview of the main Istanbul mayoral candidates Binali Yıldırım of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and main opposition candidate Ekrem İmamoğlu of the Republican People’s Party (CHP).
Political parties exchange feast visits
The upcoming June 23 local elections were on the agenda of traditional Eid al-Fitr visits of political parties in Ankara. Representatives of the political parties exchanged visits on the second day of Eid al-Fitr.
AKP Deputy Chair Jülide Sarıeroğlu welcomed representatives of the political parties. Visiting the ruling party, CHP Deputy Chair Yıldırım Kaya said Turkey needs days when love, friendship, and brotherhood never disappear.
After the CHP, the AKP received visits from delegations from the MHP, İYİ (Good) Party, Felicity Party, Great Unıty Party (BBP), Free Cause Party (HÜDA PAR), Democratic Left Party (DSP), Democrat Party (DP), Vatan Party, and Anavatan Party.
“I think it is time for us to come out of the country’s election atmosphere and to address more serious problems as both the ruling and opposition parties,” Hasan Seymen from İYİ Party said.
CHP Deputy Chair Ünal Çeviköz welcomed the guests.
He said: “I wish these rivalries were always in a feast mood. After the feast, we will enter into a new competition. But I wish this competition will not be frustrating and that nobody uses language that offends people.”
The CHP, DSP and Felicity Party delegations also visited the People’s Democratic Party (HDP).
Visiting the HDP, CHP Deputy Chair Kaya expressed the goal that the country’s 82 million people live in peace and said: “At the next feast, there will sure be processes with no discrimination between political parties, embracing with sincere feelings.”
Hurriyet Daily News