Turkey's opposition bloc: Erdogan cannot run unless the parliament approves to renew the elections
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan cannot run for a third term unless Turkey's National Assembly agrees to hold early elections, the six opposition parties said in a joint statement on Thursday after a nearly nine-hour meeting.
The statement by opposition leaders, also known as the "Table of Six,' said the constitution leaves no room for hesitation and that it is not possible for Erdogan to run again in elections due on May 14 unless Turkey's Grand National Assembly decides to renew it.
Turkey faces presidential and parliamentary elections officially set for June 18 at the latest. Erdogan, who announced his candidacy last year, said on Monday he would use his power to launch the electoral process in March for the May 14 vote.
"The fact that the president has announced his candidacy for the third time, in violation of the Constitution, is another black page in the history of our democracy," the six-member table statement added.
Erdogan, who took office in 2014, is currently in his second term as president, which is the maximum length of his term under the constitution. However, Erdogan's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) believes that the constitution does not prevent Erdogan from running for office, as it was applied for the first time in the 2018 elections.
"But we are ready for the election, with the support of the people, faith in ourselves and love for our country," said opposition leaders, who want to join forces against Erdogan but have yet to name a common candidate for the presidential election.
According to sources, the opposition bloc will complete the process of finding a candidate after the next meeting on Feb. 13.
Although the name of the candidate at the table of six has not been mentioned so far, talks about the candidate's tendencies have been going on behind the scenes for a long time.
The CHP insists on the candidacy of Chairman Kemal Kilicdaroglu, which is contested by senior members of the Good Party who believe he could have difficulty winning.
According to sources, Meral Aksener, chairwoman of the Good Party, will propose holding an election if the CHP insists on Kilicdaroglu's name.