Leaders of the six-party opposition bloc meet in Turkish capital
The leaders of six opposition parties, who had formed a loose bloc with the primary objective of restoring parliamentary democracy in Turkey, met at the headquarters of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) in Turkish capital Ankara on Sunday.
The meeting is of critical importance as it followed a move by CHP leader to consolidate his party's support for his candidacy in the coming presidential election, and Good Party leader's reluctance to express her support for his candidacy.
CHP and Good Party, who represent a combined voter support of around 37% according to a recent poll, are accompanied by four small parties in the bloc: The Felicity Party (SP) -from whom the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) had originated in early 2000s- representing about 1% of the popular vote, the Democracy and Progress Party (DEVA) and the Future Party -both founded by those who broke away from AKP- with an estimated voter support of 2-3% in total, and the Democrat Party, with insignificant support.
While the strategic objective of re-establishing a parliamentary system in place of the new presidential system -which is accused by the opposition of having led to dramatic political and economic backsliding- has till recently been considered a solid basis for an election alliance, it has begun to come to public attention that the six parties may actually be having a difficult time agreeing on a joint candidate.
Even if they are able to reach a consensus on a candidate, it will still remain unclear how that candidate will be able to represent the varying approaches of six parties on different issues, many analysts say.