We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

The beginning of the end for the Erdogan era

13 0 0

During his election campaign appearances, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan repeated one sentiment over and over again: An AKP loss in Turkey's big cities would cause chaos in the country. Now that the local elections are over, there seems to be more to it than that: The political survival of the Turkish Ppresident could be at stake, because these elections were one of the biggest defeats the president has yet suffered.

The AKP lost many important cities to the opposition. It became apparent on election night already that almost all mayoral offices in the coastal cities of Izmir, Aydin, Antalya, Adana and Mersin would go to the social democratic opposition party CHP.

But then came the next blow for Erdogan: After more than 25 years of Islamic-conservative supremacy, a surprising change is now looming in Ankara, too. The republican challenger Mansur Yavas will fill the mayor's chair in the Turkish capital for the next five years — a huge blow to the AKP.

Send Facebook Twitter google Whatsapp Tumblr linkedin stumble Digg reddit Newsvine

Permalink https://p.dw.com/p/3G03a

'Whoever wins Istanbul wins Turkey'

In Istanbul, tensions continue to run high: The entire country waited to see the results of the head-to-head race between CHP and AKP until late at night. But suddenly the high election commission stopped issuing further results.

When AKP mayoral candidate and former prime minister Binali Yildirim announced his election victory shortly before midnight, but then disappeared, many Turks became suspicious. The rumor quickly spread that ballot papers for Istanbul had been manipulated in order to bring in a win for the AKP. "We will not sleep for the next 48 hours," CHP party leader Kilicdaroglu announced in a press conference at night.

Read more: The sultan of 21st-century Turkey

In Turkey and abroad, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has a polarizing effect. He has been described as a neo-Ottoman "sultan" as well as an authoritarian leader. From his early beginnings campaigning for Islamist causes to leading NATO's second largest military as the president of Turkey, DW explores the rise of the Turkish leader.

After years of moving up the ranks of the Islamist-rooted Welfare Party, Erdogan was elected mayor of Istanbul in 1994. But four years later, the party was ruled unconstitutional on the grounds it threatened Turkey's secularist nature, and was disbanded. He was later jailed for four months for a controversial public reading of a poem, and consequently lost his mayorship over the conviction.

Erdogan co-founded the Justice and Development Party (AKP), which won a majority of seats in 2002. He was made prime minister in 2003. During his first........

© Deutsche Welle