A delegation from the parliamentary main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) visited the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) on March 6. Following the visit at the HDP headquarters, CHP group deputy chairman Özgür Özel stated that they, as the CHP, will continue their visits to political parties, including the HDP, regarding the draft law on the regulations on electoral alliances being proposed by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).
Stating that the CHP and the HDP have exchanged views on the draft law on electoral alliances, Özel said, "As the CHP, we summarized our concerns about the law package in five main chapters. There are arrangements in the package that extend the powers of local authorities and that create uncertainty about implementation."
"There are some arrangements in the package that make it possible to intervene in ballot papers on the day of voting. The package also includes arrangements about balloting committees and polling places that would obstruct people from voting safely and freely without feeling under pressure," he added.
Özel noted, "Almost all our evaluations and concerns about the draft law on electoral alliances are common with the HDP representatives. Yet as in the other parties we had previously visited, the first issue we have agreed on is that [Turkey] cannot go to the polls under the conditions of a state of emergency."
'WE ARE AGAINST ALL THE INJUSTICE BEING BROUGHT TO THE ELECTIONS'
Stating that they are against all unjust regulations being forced onto the electoral system, Özel said, "The state of emergency and the regulation that promotes propaganda inequality with the decree laws must be revoked immediately."
Underlining that paying attention to electoral security in such a period is a necessity for respecting the will of people, the HDP spokesperson Ayhan Bilgen noted, "It is pleasing that the CHP acts with this sensitivity and shows a common will about the issue."
Arguing that one of the most significant causes of political distrust in Turkey is appealing to the politics of 'polarization' and politics promoting "conflict" and "tension", Bilgen said that the HDP considers all kinds of efforts that would destroy this polarization atmosphere worthwhile.
"We, as the HDP, have concerns about the context of the law draft on electoral alliances, that those who do not want to participate in AKP-MHP alliance will be seen as an ‘enemy’. This context only increases tension and political polarization in the country. Therefore, we point out that especially public opposition should actively engage in politics and be involved in the political decision-making process alongside their will and votes", Bilgen concluded.
HDP Co-chair Pervin Buldan last week called for forming a "democracy block" in the 2019 elections against the electoral alliance of AKP-MHP despite HDP leaders' recent statements that leave the door open to a new "solution process" with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s government.
Pro-AKP journalist Abdülkadir Selvi reported last week that CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu seems to be in search of an electoral alliance with the ultra-nationalist İYİ Party or the Islamist Felicity Party (FP) against the AKP-MHP alliance.