By Aynur Ekiz, Mumin Altas and Sinan Uslu
Turkey’s prime minister on Saturday said the People’s Alliance for the June 24 early elections is set to “stand firm against imperial powers and propel Turkey into the future.”
At an opening ceremony in the eastern Erzincan province, Binali Yildirim said the opposition party alliance against the People’s Alliance, formed by the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), is serving as “a life raft for members of FETO,” the terrorist group responsible for the 2016 defeated coup.
The People’s Alliance will win the June 24 presidential elections, as the AK Party’s 13th election victory, disappointing the opposition party alliance, he predicted.
This April, parliament passed a bill for early elections on June 24, cementing Turkey’s move to a presidential system.
In an April 2017 referendum, Turkish voters approved the switch from a parliamentary system to a presidential one.
The MHP-AK Party alliance is supporting Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is seeking his second term as president.
Erdogan has served as president since 2014 — Turkey’s first popularly elected president. Before that, he served as prime minister, from 2003 to 2014.
Last week the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), Good (IYI) Party, Felicity (Saadet) Party, and Democrat Party (DP) signed a declaration for a four-party alliance called the “Nation Alliance” to jointly run in the parliamentary elections.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen are responsible for the July 15, 2016 defeated coup, which martyred 250 people and injured some 2,200 others.