Turkish parties to submit candidacy lists April 7

Turkish parties to submit candidacy lists April 7

Turkish parties to submit candidacy lists April 7

DHA Photo

All political parties running for the upcoming parliamentary elections have been working intensely to finalize their candidates as a April 7 deadline to submit their candidate lists to the Supreme Election Board (YSK) approaches. 

Prime Minister and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chairman Ahmet Davutoğlu is involved in the preparation of his party’s candidate list, in addition to the writing of the election manifesto to be announced on April 15. Davutoğlu will begin election rallies on April 27.

Davutoğlu held face-to-face meetings with candidate nominees before finalizing the list. With 70 lawmakers of the AKP unable to run for parliament due to a three-term restriction rule, Davutoğlu is expected to renew a good portion of the AKP’s parliamentary group. He plans to give more candidate seats to women, as well as more young people, while maintaining a balance. The party’s deputy prime minister heavyweights, Bülent Arınç and Ali Babacan, along with deputy AKP leader Hüseyin Çelik, will be absent from the next parliamentary group. 

As the sole party to hold primaries to select a majority of their parliamentary candidates, the Republican People’s Party (CHP) is scheduled to hold a party assembly meeting to finalize its 550 candidates. Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the CHP, will have to obtain the backing of the simple majority of the party assembly before submitting the list to the YSK. 

The CHP in-house elections paved the way for the election of women and young people running for parliament. Kılıçdaroğlu has already declared he will reserve the first places of important cities like Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir for female candidates. 

The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli continues to work behind closed doors to finalize his list. 

On the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) front, a drafted list was first sent to İmralı prison, where Abdullah Öcalan, the imprisoned leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), is serving a life sentence. Öcalan is to have the last word on the list before it is submitted to the YSK. 

The 2015 elections will mark a first for the Kurdish political movement, as the party believes it can exceed the 10 percent threshold for the first time in history.