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Election in Turkey

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By Arthur I. Cyr

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has suffered a major political defeat, including, but reaching well beyond, the election involved. On June 23, the voters of Istanbul sent the autocrat a courageous message of defiance.

A sizable majority has elected opposition candidate Ekrem Imamoglu mayor. This is a repeat of the mayoral election held on March 31. Imamoglu won that one by a narrow margin, spurring the ruling party arrogantly to invalidate the result and schedule the rerun

Erdogan, a committed political gambler, no longer is the predictable winner. His ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) was victorious in a presidential election last June, but lost a parliamentary majority. Holding both elections at the same time was a gamble.

Three years ago, he dramatically and personally turned back an attempted military coup, using social media to urge the people of Turkey to resist. That showed courage as well as cleverness. Turkey has been in a declared state........

© The Korea Times