Turkey’s intelligence chief to run for elections in June: Sources

Turkey’s intelligence chief to run for elections in June: Sources

Nuray Babacan ANKARA
Turkey’s intelligence chief to run for elections in June: Sources While political parties have boosted their efforts for the general elections in June, Turkey’s current intelligence chief is among the people who are expected to run for the elections to join the ruling party, according to sources.

Hakan Fidan, head of Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency (MİT), could become the new foreign minister if he is elected a member of the parliament, according to sources. Should this be the case, Fidan would have to leave his current post within 15 days, as those who move to run for the general elections are obligated to resign prior to Feb. 10.  Fidan was considered a strong candidate for the foreign minister post before Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu announced the new cabinet members last August after taking the helm at the Prime Ministry from President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Many civil servants have begun testing the waters to run for the general elections, set to be held June 7, while the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has reportedly warned potential contenders not to resign before receiving approval from the party. Many AKP lawmakers will not able to run for the elections due to the three term restriction.

It has been noted that Davutoğlu and Erdoğan were determined for efficient civil servants to maintain their seats. Civil servants who were assigned following the operations against the “parallel structure” will not be allowed to leave their posts while the AKP has only requested several individuals to resign and be a candidate.

Advisors Adnan Boynukara, Mücahit Aslan, Ertan Aydın, Taha Özhan and Faruk Koca, as well as the AKP’s Central Executive Board (MYK) members Yasin Aktay and Mahzar Bağlı are among those who are planned to become AKP lawmakers in the next term.

Interior Minister Efkan Ala, who is not a member of the parliament, will also run in the elections to continue his political career as a lawmaker.

Along with Binali Yıldırım and Cevdet Erdöl, who have completed three terms at parliament, Energy Minister Taner Yıldız, Customs and Trade Minister Nurettin Canikli and former Health Minister Recep Akdağ will reportedly be assigned as Erdoğan’s new advisors. Former Education Minister Nimet Baş could become Erdoğan’s first female advisor at the presidential palace, the sources also said.

Former ministers Nihat Ergün, Sadullah Ergin and Bekir Bozdağ may be considered for the MYK, while others may be appointed as deputy heads of the AKP.

According to the list prepared by daily Haber Türk, Davutoğlu’s advisor Etyen Mahçupyan, National Security Council (MGK) General Secretary Seyfullah Hacımüftüoğlu, Turkish parliament General Secretary İrfan Neziroğlu, Education Ministry Undersecretary Yusuf Tekin, Turkish Airlines CEO Temel Kotil, former Istanbul Governor Hüseyin Avni Mutlu and Edirne Governor Dursun Ali Şahin were among those who are predicted to run for the elections.