A Historical Perspective
|by Daniel Johnson||Winter 2016|
In a June 2015 election, the new People’s Democracy Party (HDP) of Turkey passed a highly undemocratic 10 percent threshold to enter the Turkish parliament.
|by Daniel Johnson|
The October 10 Labor, Peace, and Democracy Rally in Turkey’s capital of Ankara was called to demand an end to the violent policies of the Turkish state. Organized by trade union federations and progressive organizations, the demonstration was also supported by the People’s Democracy Party (HDP), a leftwing pro-Kurdish party consistently demonized in recent months by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
|by Daniel Johnson June 25, 2015|
In the weeks leading up to the June 7 parliamentary election in Turkey communities across the country were gripped with a mixture of excitement, anxiety, and fear. Though President Tayyip Recep Erdoğan was supposed to be above the fray of party politics, the former two-term prime minister and co-founder of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) made no secret of his hopes for an AKP victory, as he rallied and spoke continuously in the weeks and months before the election. 367 seats in the 550-member parliament would make possible Erdoğan’s desire to change the Turkish government from a parliamentary to a presidential system, thereby enhancing executive, and Erdoğan’s, grip on political power.
|by Daniel Johnson January 16, 2015|
On December 24 a sixteen-year-old student named Mehmet Emin Altunses was arrested in the Turkish city of Konya. His crime? Apparently the youth insulted President Tayyip Recep Erdoğan, saying in a speech that the new president (who served two terms as prime minister between 2003 and 2014) was “the leader of corruption, bribery and theft,” as well as the owner of an “illegal palace.”