Eventful elections in Turkey

Eventful elections in Turkey


By Manolis Kostidis – Ankara

The Femen “strike” again

The girls of the organization Femen turned a large voting center in Istanbul upside down.

Two girls caught everyone by surprise when they arrived at a polling center in Scutari, took off their shirts and climbed topless on the voting center’s desks.

On their breasts they had written the motto “ban Erdogan”. As they said they wanted to protest against the bans on Twitter and YouTube imposed by the turkish government.

The girls chose the particular voting center because the Turkish prime minister had voted there in the previous elections. This time however, Erdogan chose a different polling center located within walking distance of the one the protest took place.

Summer time “yok” – Unbelievable confusion for the voters

An unbelievable confusion to 52.9 million Turkish voters was caused by the decision of the turkish government to postpone for a day the time shift applied all around the world, where the indicators are turned one hour forward. The reason for postponing the application of summer time according to the Erdogan government, was to facilitate the smooth conducting of the elections, but nobody predicted the “new technology” factor. All smart phones of the Turkish citizens changed the time automatically, resulting in thousands of voters going to the polls earlier having to wait for an hour to vote.

Similar problems were also caused to computers that had not downloaded a new version of the software. Problems also occurred in the luggage delivery system at Istanbul’s airport as the system automatically changed the time, ignoring the government’s plans and as a result the luggage were delivered to the passengers with great delay. There were also problems with many flights as passengers were confusing their departure time.

Eight dead in the elections due to disagreements for the candidates

Blood stained the local elections as 8 people were killed during clashes between groups that supported rival candidates .

Six people were killed in a battle with firearms between two families in a village near the city Urfa, close to the border with Syria. The reason the battle was the choice of community leader!

In the city of Hatay two people killed in a battle, which again included firearms that broke out between two candidates’ relatives in the village Gkompasi, according to officials. Nine people were seriously injured and had to be transported to the nearest hospital.

The statistics of the elections

In the municipal elections that the government considers a referendum, after the scandals that were uncovered in the last 3.5 months, 52.6 million Turks vote. An impressive fact generated by these data is that in the Turkey of 76 million inhabitants, the young population under 18 years is more than 18 million people.

Twenty six parties participated in the electoral campaign and the number of mayor candidates  reached 9669 .

Three hundred and forty thousand police officers and men of the gendarmerie (Jandarma) have been employed for the safety of the voting procedure and the counting of the votes in the 194,310 ballot boxes that were erected throughout Turkey. Two and a half million Turks voted for the first time.

Erdogan and his jacket

The Turkish prime minister voted in Istanbul, unlike President, Abdullah Gul and the president of the Republican People’s Party, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, who voted in Ankara .

The jacket the Turkish prime minister wore when he went to the ballot box to vote was hotly debated in Turkey, and was considered by many seamstresses a bit eccentric, since it looked more like the  design one would use for tablecloth than a fabric for a jacket.