Act against mayors: Erdoğan to parties
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has urged other political parties to take action against mayors “about whom questions have been raised,” after the resignation of ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) mayors from a number of cities, including Istanbul and Ankara.
“We are hearing a lot of things about some municipalities facing problems. The relevant parties should do whatever necessary to address these problem municipalities. Otherwise, inspectors from the Interior Ministry might be forced to intervene,” Erdoğan told journalists on board his jet while returning from Baku late on Oct. 31.
“All municipalities are already under scrutiny. If anything is found in these investigations, the necessary action will certainly be taken,” he said.
The mayors of Istanbul, Ankara, Bursa, Balıkesir, Niğde and Düzce recently resigned from their positions upon demands from Erdoğan, who said the issue was part of the preparations for elections scheduled for March 2019.
The opposition has strongly criticized Erdoğan and the AKP for forcing elected mayors to resign and for reported threats directed against targeted mayors, as claimed by outgoing Balıkesir Mayor Edip Uğur.
“We have no information about the mayor being threatened. I feel regret about his statements. We are not the kind of people who could leave him alone if such threats have taken place,” Erdoğan said about Uğur’s statement.