Can Türkiye's political parties succeed in reaching a consensus? | Policy

Ankara – In recent months, there has been a clear shift towards “softening” or “normalization” among the main political parties in Turkish politics, a phase that was kicked off by the president's visit. Republican People's Party Ozil To the President of the Republic Recep Tayyip Erdogan At headquarters Justice and Development Party On May 2, Erdogan was elected governor, and then on June 11, Erdogan visited the party headquarters for the first time in 18 years.

Observers said the president was working to reduce the confrontation and harsh rhetoric between the AKP and the CHP, while Ozil was trying to achieve results by restoring the CHP's confidence and proving his ability to lead the country.

An undisclosed crisis

As Zaim notes, the political courtship between Türkiye's largest parties did not last long National Movement Party Devlet BacheliAllies of President Erdogan expressed dissatisfaction with the repeated meetings between the two parties and said in a statement that “the AKP and the CHP can form a joint alliance.”

On June 12, Ozil responded to Bacheli's statement, saying: “No one should suggest an alliance to us, and Bacheli should not take this step lightly to push his partners in mismanagement crime on us. Either they solve these problems or leave us to solve them.”

In an effort to deny the existence of an undisclosed crisis in the coalition, Erdogan received his ally Baceli at the presidential palace in Ankara on June 26 and accused opposition leader Ozil of ignoring a “political normalization” meeting and inciting tensions in the country.

Erdogan sharply criticized Ozil without mentioning his name, saying that civilized reconciliation, normalization or political détente does not mean slandering us, “we will not tolerate inappropriate remarks”, “we hope that the opposition will tolerate our honesty, you will see the reaction of the opposition.” “For our constructive efforts, our country has seen how the leaders of the Republican People's Party tried to drag politics into tensions.”

Erdogan stressed that the AKP will continue to move forward side by side with the Nationalist Movement Party, and stressed that attacking any member of the alliance is a direct attack on its cohesion.

Political analyst Gokan Bulut explained to Al Jazeera that the president is not yet ready to sacrifice relations with nationalist ally Bahceli in favor of an alliance with Ozil, whose policies seem to have lost their way and are unstable.

He pointed to criticism and questioning from within and outside the opposition, with some suggesting Ozil had become ambivalent after his meeting with Erdogan, adding to doubts about his political intentions.

Within the framework of the constitutional negotiations, neither party has so far achieved its goals or shown willingness to meet the other's demands, as the CHP demands an increase in pensioners' salaries, a minimum wage, the release of some detainees and the retrial of prominent figures such as Osman Kavala and Altin Demirtas.

Although the only achievement was the release of elderly military officers accused of planning the 1997 coup, the CHP, which saw the need to draft a new constitution, made no concessions to move forward with the matter.

Republican People's Party Chairman Ozil, Source: Anatolia
President of the People's Republic of China Ozil seeks to prepare the public for presidential elections (Anatolia)

Trying to overthrow Ozil

Media close to the Republican People's Party revealed that a faction within the party is working to remove current President Ozil and replace him with the mayor of Istanbul. Ekrem ImamogluThis is thanks to Özil's initiative to engage in dialogue with other parties in the process of political normalization.

Party sources said a group of senior officials were unhappy with Ozil's policies and, with the support of former party chairman Kemal Kilicdaroglu, were seeking to oust Ozil at the party congress scheduled for November next year.

Barish Turkoglu, a writer for the Cumhuriyet newspaper, said that a member of the party's Central Executive Committee visited Kilicdaroglu, who had previously expressed dissatisfaction with Ozil's initiative to meet with Erdogan, and proposed to transform the November General Congress from a meeting to update the party constitution into a special meeting to elect a new chairman.

For his part, Gökçen Alokoş, former head of the Republican People's Party youth wing, told Al Jazeera that Özil's recent steps against the ruling party were taken within the framework of his own and the public's preparations to run in the upcoming presidential elections.

He added that such moves upset many party leaders who believe that coming to power must be achieved through political debate rather than agreement, suggesting that party leaders may be forced to replace Ozil with another president if he continues to pursue personalistic policies and puts his personal interests first in the party's front.

Early elections

Political analyst Bulut said these moves could be the reason why Özil abandoned his policy of normalizing relations with the ruling party and returned to strongly criticizing the government and its allies, in addition to calling for early elections, as he announced last week. He expects the country to hold elections within a year and a half.

“Turkey will overthrow Erdogan and his government in the first elections that will take place soon, which will not be the elections that will be held in 2028,” Ozil said, adding that he was not announcing local elections to avoid turning the results into a political tool, “but I am the one who most wants these elections to take place,” he said.

In order for the country to hold early presidential and parliamentary elections, the consent of 360 members of parliament must be obtained, and neither the opposition nor the government currently has this number. On the other hand, President Erdogan calmed the growing debate on the possibility of early elections and stressed that “elections will not be held within 4 years.”

Confirming this position, Justice Minister Yilmaz Tonci said that efforts to draft a new constitution will continue during these four years, stressing that no new elections will be held during this period.

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