Expat voting bill delayed ‘to rectify shortcomings’
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily NewsParliament’s Constitution Commission agreed yesterday to send a draft law, which would allow Turks living abroad to vote in Turkish elections, to a sub commission for further discussion and possible revision.
While noting that the bill was an important step forward, Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Atilla Kart raised misgivings that the bill could complicate relations and task-sharing between the Foreign Ministry and the Directorate for Turks and Related Communities Abroad.
Faruk Bal of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) argued that some provisions in the bill were “not applicable” and in breach of existing regulations, warning against creating fresh electoral problems. Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ defended the bill, saying that it was “a technical arrangement with no political color.” However, he agreed that the bill should be sent to a sub committee “to rectify shortcomings.” About 6.5 million Turks live in foreign countries. Currently, they are allowed to vote only at ballot boxes set up at Turkish airports