Nuray Babacan – ANKARA
The ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) public poll has indicated economy as the most important problem for Turkey by public opinion while previously, terror had been indicated as the primary issue.
The order of the most important problems has changed since the last study undertaken by the AKP headquarters. While terror had been indicated as Turkey’s most important problem for years, this year, economy has come to the forefront.
Although there has been an increase in complaints about the economy, problems such as unemployment and the high cost of living have mostly been highlighted by participants.
After economy, terror and foreign policy, especially regarding relations with the United States, have appeared as leading problems.
The headquarters has regularly funded research in order to be informed about public opinion on social problems and to shape governmental policies.
In the study that took place before U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to declare Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, participants were asked about U.S.-Turkey relations and their opinion on Turkey’s policy.
Fifty-eight percent of participants had supported Ankara’s stance on the U.S., especially on its policies over the Syrian conflict and its relations with the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).
Ankara has been critical of the U.S. over its support to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which includes the YPG and the Democratic Union Party (PYD), arguing that the PYD and YPG forces are an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Thirty-six percent of participants have stated they do not support governmental policies, while 6 percent did not express the opinion.
In the research, participants had also been asked about the ongoing reshuffle of local AKP organizations. Sixty-five percent of participants have showed support for the changes in the mayoralties.
However, AKP officials have decided to undergo specific research in the cities whose mayors had been asked to resign. The local study will assess people’s satisfaction with the reshuffle and the service of the mayoralties in order to reshape policy accordingly.