Gül urges ‘more patience’ for final call on presidential candidacy
ANKARAExpressing gratitude for the “patience” shown by the public so far, President Abdullah Gül on June 11 avoided questions on whether he had made his final call with regard to running in Turkey’s upcoming presidential election.
“Frankly, everybody has been very patient,” Gül said, interrupting a reporter’s question on the subject before it was finished.
“You have waited for quite a while. Since you have waited this long, you shall wait a little more. Anyway, there is only little time left, you see. The process is moving on,” he added.
The president’s remarks came while speaking to reporters at a reception hosted at the presidential palace, on an occasion when 14 foreign academics were decorated with the Order of Merit and the Order of the Republic Medal of Turkey for their studies in promoting Turkey at an international level.
The two-round elections, during which Turks will directly vote for the president for the first time ever, are scheduled to take place on Aug. 10 and Aug. 24. The Supreme Election Board (YSK) has set July 3 as the final date for individuals to officially submit their candidacy.
Earlier this month, while acknowledging that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan would declare his candidacy for the presidency, Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay suggested that the more urgent question facing the government was convincing President Gül to lead the party in the run-up to parliamentary elections in 2015.
At the time, Atalay defined the magic formula as a “Putin-Medvedev model” under which Gül and Erdoğan would swap roles.
But as early as April 18, Gül ruled himself out as a potential future prime minister, saying a “Putin-Medvedev model” was not suitable for Turkey.