MHP says it will not ally with Erdoğan's AKP for Turkey's local polls
The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) has announced it will not ally with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) for the March 2019 municipal elections amid a growing row between the two parties over a debate on “nationalism” and a proposed amnesty law, signaling an end to the “People’s Alliance” they had formed earlier in 2018.
“We are going to draw up our own plan for the local elections. We are pulling back from our demand for an alliance [with the AKP],” MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli told his parliamentary group on Oct. 23.
"No alliance can survive if one party is rejected and forced to step back," he added.
The MHP and the AKP had formed the People’s Alliance for the June 24 presidential and parliamentary elections, which led to the latter’s chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s election as the first executive president of Turkey.
The ties between the two parties have strained recently after the MHP submitted a draft law to parliament for a partial amnesty for some convicts. The AKP strongly reacted against the MHP’s move.
Another source of tension appeared after Turkey’s administrative court ordered the reinstatement of the national oath for schools across Turkey which had been removed in 2009.
While the AKP strongly slammed the court, the MHP defended it and accused the ruling party of undermining the “Turkishness” of the country.