Brussels, June 5
Political tension is being intentionally increased by the ruling Justice and Development party (AKP – Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi) in Turkey on the eve of legislative elections as opinion polls show a dramatic decrease for the votes of the AKP. After standing as independent candidates for previous two legislative elections in order to circumvent the highest electoral threshold in the world, the HDP decided to challenge the AKP and run as the party for the elections on June 7th.
If the HDP manages to overpass 10% threshold, the AKP will not have 330 seats in the parliament which is necessary for bringing a constitutional change to referendum. Depending on the results of other two parties, it is also highly possible that the AKP will not win enough seats to form the majority government for which the requirement is 276 seats.
Besides, president Erdoğan who is supposed to be impartial is openly and clearly holds public meetings in support of his former party AKP. He knowingly and intentionally breaks the constitution everyday in support of the AKP; polarizes the country in two camps: the AKP and the rest. If the HDP overpasses the 10% threshold, his dream of “Turkish style” presidency free from any check & balance will never become true. He therefore points the HDP and co-chair Demirtaş in particular as a target by slanders.
As the results of these elections will radically change the future of Turkey towards either the continuation of Erdoğan’s dictatorship or a democratic transformation with a decreased AKP power, existent fragile situation is provoked by the AKP and president Erdoğan against the HDP. Since the beginning of the electoral campaign, more than 100 different places including our party offices, party headquarters, cars, members and volunteers have been attacked.
The violence against the HDP members and offices intensifies as the Election Day becomes nearer. After the bomb attacks in our Mersin and Adana offices on May 18th, many major attacks took place so far. On 3rd of June during an armed attack in Bingöl on a minivan used for the electoral campaign, the driver Hamdullah Öğe was brutally killed. On 4th of June just before the electoral public meeting of our party in Erzurum, a crowd attacked a minivan on which there was HDP flags and set the minivan in fire while the driver was inside. The driver was seriously injured. None of those who are responsible for these serious attacks were brought before justice. The attackers enjoy full impunity provided by the AKP.
All these attacks and many other violations raise serious concerns about the transparency and fairness of the elections. We call once again on International and European institutions to closely monitor the elections. We also call on the justice to shed light on these dark events.