Turkey: Main opposition leader gets strong support from Kurdish cities

Turkey: Main opposition leader gets strong support from Kurdish cities
Update: 16 September 2022 22:48
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CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu would get 45% of the votes in 16 Kurdish cities if he ran against Erdogan, a recent poll suggests

A recent poll conducted in 16 Kurdish cities in Turkey suggested the backing of 45% of the electorate if main opposition CHP (People’s Republican Party) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu ran against President Tayyip Erdogan in next year’s presidential elections. Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu will get 39.4% of the votes if he becomes opposition’s candidate, according to the poll.

The poll, carried out by Sociopolitical Center of Field Research based in southeastern city of Diyarbakir showed that Erdogan’s AKP (Justice and Development Party) suffered a 9.1% decrease in votes and fell to 20% as HDP’s (Peoples’ Democratic Party) votes hiked 3.2 % to 39.6%.  

The poll asked the residents of 1501 households “What is the most important problem in Turkey?” to which 71.6% replied as “economical crisis/unemployment”, 9.3% as “Kurdish question” and 3% as “education.”

The firm support for Kilicdaroglu among Kurdish voters is a powerful push for the CHP leader’s candidacy in next year’s elections. 

On Friday, Ozer Sencar, a prominent Turkish pollster whose company has been conducting monthly polls for the last 18 years said that an election victory for the opposition bloc without the support of the HDP was "definitely impossible."

Jailed former co-chair of HDP Selahattin Demirtas also signaled support for Kilicdaroglu’s candidacy in the next year’s presidential elections as “he seems to have significant support from different social segments, which is not an easy task in a polarized country like Turkey.”