Turkey’s top election board rejects HDP’s 4th complaint about Erdoğan
ISTANBUL – Doğan News Agency
DHA PhotoTurkey’s top election board has now rejected for a fourth time the Peoples’ Democratic Party’s (HDP) complaints regarding the president’s rallies alleged to be in favor of the ruling party.
The Supreme Election Board (YSK) rejected the fourth complaint with a majority of the votes late May 20.
The HDP’s application said the rallies that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan conducted before the upcoming general elections were “violating election security and conducting an election campaign in favor of a political party, thus exceeding the authority the constitution granted the president.”
The board dismissed the complaint with nine yay to one nay votes on grounds that “the president does not have either political or penal responsibility for the procedures and actions he conducts in regards to his duty, while he only has penal responsibility for charges of treason,” citing the Turkish constitution’s 105th article.
The eight-page long decision stated the YSK was not authorized to inspect the president’s actions, as there was no regulation granting the board such authority.
‘President openly targeting some parties, politicians’
The justification of the only nay vote stated President Erdoğan was openly addressing, targeting and criticizing political parties and politicians in open and closed meetings, while giving propagandistic speeches which could affect the elections results.
“We do not agree with the decision,” the nay justification read.
The HDP previously filed three complaints to the YSK about the president’s violation of impartiality. While the first two complaints were rejected unanimously, the third rejection was met with a majority of the votes.
YSK also rejected appeals from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the Vatan (Homeland) Party early May.
The parties had asked the YSK to ensure principles of fair broadcasting before the June 7 general elections, claiming that recent speeches of Erdoğan’s, who is under oath to act “impartially” as president, had violated the constitution by “delivering partisan speeches” in support of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
Although the YSK rejected all appeals against Erdoğan, two members of the 11-person body have said that Erdoğan was engaging in “political propaganda” by targeting certain parties, according to a May 15 report by daily Cumhuriyet.