Foreign Ministry and Electoral Council in talks to ease appointment system for 2015 elections
Sevil Erkuş ANKARA
The low number of polling stations was cited as one reason for the low turnout abroad in the presidential elections of August, particularly in Germany.The Foreign Ministry and the Supreme Electoral Council (YSK) are in talks to ease the process of casting votes in the upcoming elections for Turkish nationals in foreign countries.
Turkish expatriates will be able to vote whether they obtain an online appointment or not, said a Foreign Ministry official who wished to remain anonymous, adding that the YSK "feels positively" about easing the election process for the upcoming vote, scheduled for June 2015.
A YSK decision will be sufficient to make amendments to the “appointment system,” and Foreign Ministry officials are set to have another meeting with the YSK next week on the issue.
The current appointment system was implemented for the first time in foreign countries in the August presidential election. The government later blamed problems in the system for the low turnout of expatriate voters.
The low number of polling stations was also cited as a reason for the low turnout, particularly in Germany.
The number of potential Turkish voters living in Germany is approximately 1.5 million, but in the first ever popular presidential elections in August when then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was elected president, only around 100,000 in Germany registered to cast their vote.