Turkish Parliament to open in absence of main opposition leader
AA PhotoTurkey’s parliament will open its putative fall session on Oct. 1 in the absence of Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.
Kılıçdaroğlu will be traveling to Lyon in France on Oct. 1 as part of his election campaign, meeting Turks living in France and civil society representatives.
In an interview with daily Milliyet, he said he would like to attend the parliament opening ceremony but his Lyon visit was already scheduled.
Referring to the address of President Recep Erdoğan at parliament’s opening ceremony, Kılıçdaroğlu denied that his absence was a protest. “If I was in Ankara I’d go and listen to the president’s speech,” he said.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, who has been in New York for U.N. General Assembly meeting, will embark for home late on Sept. 30 to attend parliament’s opening.
Due to the snap Nov. 1 election, parliament will be opening and closing on Oct. 1, with the session marking the last time that legislators will sit before the Nov. 1 election.
The Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) is planning to protest Erdoğan at the session and is said to be debating whether or not to attend the session.
Attendance is expected to be low because of the ongoing campaign activities of deputies who have been nominated to run on Nov. 1, with all procedural activities, including President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s speech, estimated to last only three hours.
Current lawmakers were elected in the June 7 election, but they have only sat for a total of 22 hours and 23 minutes since the polls.