Our candidate in presidential elections is Erdoğan: MHP leader
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
In the presidential polls just over two months from now, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) will not field a candidate, as it supports President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, said the party's leader Devlet Bahçeli on April 21.
"None of our party members will run for president. Our candidate is Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan," Bahçeli told a news conference in the capital Ankara.
The MHP and ruling Erdoğan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) are set to compete in an election alliance in the combined parliamentary and presidential polls on June 24.
For the elections, Bahçeli said the party's strategy has two pillars: "A strong, balanced parliament, [and] presidential elections done simultaneously."
Bahçeli added that the MHP will work for Erdoğan's candidacy as well promote their own candidates for parliament.
Turkish parliament on April 20 passed a bill calling for early elections on June 24, with 386 lawmakers supporting the move.
In an April 2017 referendum, voters approved a bill switching Turkey from a parliamentary system to a presidential one.
Under the changes, the number of lawmakers in parliament rises to 600 from 550, presidential and parliamentary elections are held every five years, and presidents can retain ties to their political party. The prime minister post is also abolished.