Erdogan to announce election date in March – analyst

Erdogan to announce election date in March – analyst
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Pro-government journalist Firat said April 30, May 7 and May 14 are the three possible early election dates featured by AKP’s election board

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will announce the date of elections in March, journalist Hande Firat said.

“Erdogan will have the last word and after evaluating all the factors, he will announce the election date in March with a presidential decision,” Firat said in an article published in Hurriyet newspaper on Friday.

Pro-government journalist featured the possible early election dates as April 30, May 7 and May 14.

Turkey is facing presidential and parliamentary elections scheduled for June 18 at the latest, amid the country’s economic woes that trouble Erdogan’s public support.

While Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) officials were signalling an early election in the recent months, Erdogan last week confirmed his party’s plans for the first time, saying that they may bring the date of elections forward due to seasonal conditions.

Despite Erdogan’s not specifying what he meant by “seasonal conditions,” Parliamentary Deputy Speaker Sureyya Sadi Bilgic from the AKP later cited them as Muslim’s religious holiday of Eid al-Adha which will start on June 28, the annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca which will begin on June 26, and the university entrance exams which will be held on June 17-18.

Bilgic said if they cannot get a May date decision from the parliament, the process will proceed with the decision of the President.

Earlier this month, AKP’s vice chair Hamza Dag said there are two possible ways for an early election; “One of them is the parliament’s taking a decision with the vote of 360 deputies in the 550-seat assembly, and the other is the president’s dissolving the parliament.”

The ruling alliance (AKP-MHP) maintains 334 seats in Turkish parliament.