At the request of @buddyhollytoday, who asked me to share my two cents in NT, I decided to post something on the result of yesterday's Istanbul election.Why aren’t you commenting on Erdogan today? Not sure what thread, but you can give us some idea of where Turkey is going now.
Some background for people who are not familiar, wondering what the hell is going on and why does a freaking local election matter so much, covering all the headlines in Western/European newspapers this morning.
We had local elections throughout Turkey on 31st of March. Opposition won the biggest cities in West, Izmir, Ankara and Istanbul. It was a massive blow for Erdogan and the governing AKP, but especially he couldn't handle the loss of Istanbul, the city he was born in and grew up. Election was won by Imamoglu in Istanbul, a secular, western-minded, pro-European opposition candidate, by about 20,000 votes, very narrow win for a city of Istanbul, where 16 million people live. So AKP and Erdogan's crew pushed hard to reverse the results in Istanbul alone (had to concede defeats in other big cities), legal objections after legal objections, about box's sizes, about this about that, but the result stayed same, Imamoglu received his official mandate to start his job as the Mayor of Istanbul. Since Erdogan repeatedly said ''The ones who lose Istanbul, lose whole of Turkey, we cannot allow that'' It wasn't going to end this way.
AKP this time challanged to annul the election and push for re-run. But it was too late. After 18 days in post, we all thought Imamoglu will stay as the Mayor of Istanbul for the rest of 5 years.
But YSK (Electoral High Commitee of Turkey) annuled the Istanbul election at the request of AKP and Erdogan, citing laughable justifications, ruled for a re-run on 23rd of June. It was the most disgraceful decision of Turkish democracy. Erdogan didn't like the result regarding the biggest city of Turkey and got it annuled. I, personaly, felt defeated. Didn't expect anything but AKP's candidate eventual win, because the media is fully in their control and they told to public lies such as ''opposition stole lots of votes, there was a fraud and that and this'' and I thought they were going to be succesful spreading lies above, also other fake news. Erdogan, as the president who has to stay impartial during local elections, traveled around city neighbourhood by neighbourhood telling if Imamoglu/opposition captures the city, Western countries who are the enemies of Turkey will feel as victors too, voting for 'them' is almost like a treason, so on and so forth.
But It did not work.
Imamoglu, the opposition candidate yesterday won the election with even higher margin, this time the gap was not 20,000 but 850,000. His vote share increased from 48,5 to %54,5, AKP candidate rolled back at %44,5.
That's why I guess in general western/european media was surprised and in shock, and why buddyholly all the way from Canada was curious about Mayoral election in Istanbul. Yes it was a significant defeat for Erdogan regime, but still we are far from over about him. He just won't go away easily.