Recent revelations regarding the critical national elections in Turkey show that the Turkish opposition has a considerable challenge ahead of the country’s presidential runoff vote on 28 May, said the European Green Party on Friday, voicing support for Turkey’s Green Left “on this hopeful but challenging path”.
Citing the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe (CoE) report concerning the 14 May parliamentary election, European Greens emphasised the importance of ensuring free and fair elections in Turkey and addressed the outstanding issues:
- Criminalisation of political forces
- Detention of opposition politicians
- Prosecutions & arrests of journalists
- Misuse of public resources
- Blocking & removal of online content
- Biased media coverage
“There are other worrying reports from election day, such as the intimidation of voters by the army in Kurdish-majority areas, obstruction of volunteer election observers, active efforts by governing parties to delay the counting process & indications of systematic voting fraud,” said European Greens in its statement.
The party stressed that Turkey’s Green Left has been a specific target of attempts to corrupt the vote and reported that at several polling stations, significant numbers of votes for the pro-Kurdish party were misattributed to the ruling coalition’s far-right partner Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and after the appeals were made the Green Left’s alliance gained two additional seats, bringing the number of MPs to 65.
“It is vital that key communication channels operate on the basis of democratic principles,” said European Greens, raising concerns about the Turkish government’s actively suppressing free expression by blocking Twitter accounts. The party also stated that it follows the situation on the ground.
Quoting from the Co-spokesperson of Turkey’s Green Left Çiğdem Kılıçgün Uçar that “no one should give way to pessimism and despair”, the party urged democrats in Turkey to continue their work to end President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s two-decade reign.