Turkey goes to the polls on Sunday in a snap election that could have far reaching ramifications. The election had been scheduled for next year, but was brought forward by President Erdoğan who was confident he would win the vote.
Four people were killed and several more injured in clashes at a campaign rally in Suruc, Şanlıurfa Province, earlier this month. At the start of June, the FCO issued an updated travel advisory related to the election that prompted the UK press to ask whether travellers should cancel their planned trips.
President Erdoğan has overseen a dramatic clampdown on the press and members of the opposition following a failed coup attempt in 2016. A state of emergency has remained in place since the coup attempt. He consolidated his power in a referendum last year, and has been accused of undermining the judiciary.
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) June 21, 2018
Recent rallies and press coverage suggests the election results could be much closer than President Erdoğan anticipated. A troubled economy, ongoing political unrest amid the Kurdish population, terror threats resulting from involvement in the fight against Daesh, and resentment of the President’s authoritarian approach to governing form a potentially volatile backdrop. If you or your clients are in Turkey, you should keep a close eye on the poll results – a closer or contested outcome could lead to widespread protests and a violent crackdown.
What’s at stake in Turkey’s elections https://t.co/d3wezWn8ya
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) June 22, 2018
On Sunday, voters will elect a president and parliament in snap elections called by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has amassed broad powers over the years. Here’s a look at what’s at stake. https://t.co/DP5EqL1xS1
— NPR (@NPR) June 22, 2018
- Identify reliable news sources that will provide up to date information. The US Embassy in Ankara will share updates if the situation becomes volatile. It is also worth following the FCO on Twitter and checking in regularly.
- Make sure you have the contact information for your consular services saved on your phone and in a secure offline place as well.
- Make sure you have your flight information and contact details for your airline, as well as the number for a taxi service to the airport.
- Avoid crowds and demonstrations.
- Monitor the local media.
- If something does happen, make sure you check in with friends and family.
The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office recommends you ‘avoid large gatherings and follow the advice of the local authorities.’
You may find some of the advice from our 2016 piece ‘Expert Advice: Is it safe to go to Turkey?‘ useful.
News and headlines
- teleSUR: Turkey: Who Is Running in Presidential, Parliamentary Elections
- Voice of America: Turkey Detains 14 IS Suspects Before Elections
- Bloomberg: Young Voters Chafe at Erdogan’s Turkey, the Only One They Know
- Bloomberg: A Crazy $200 Billion Says Erdogan Wins His Election Bet
- BBC News: Reality Check: Could Turkey’s next president be too powerful?
- Al Jazeera: Turkey’s AK Party, opposition scramble for votes ahead of polls
- The Conversation: Turkey’s currency turmoil and upcoming election – what you need to know
- Reuters: Turkey’s Erdogan says may seek coalition if fails to get majority: paper
- Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty: Erdogan’s Authority To Be Tested In Turkish Polls
- Bloomberg: Erdogan’s Grip on Turkey Is Loosening Even in His Black Sea Home
- The Guardian: Erdoğan has Turkey in his palm as key elections loom
- The Independent: Turkish opposition quietly optimistic ahead of ‘most important election in country’s history’
- Bloomberg: Refugees Stoke Turkish Anger, Roiling Erdogan Election Campaign
- Deutsche Welle: Turkey elections: Can Erdogan really lose?
- Reuters: Turkey’s Erdogan says state of emergency may be lifted after June 24 elections
“Four things to watch in Turkey’s elections” https://t.co/BKM5kl9QNN
— TIME (@TIME) June 21, 2018
“The West shouldn’t underestimate the strength of Turkey’s democratic spirit” https://t.co/vHzz3ZwIuk
— TIME (@TIME) June 22, 2018
My latest column for the @nypost talks about Sunday’s elections in Turkey. And while I think Erdogan will win, the opposition has run an impressive campaign. Here’s to the tides changing in Turkey. https://t.co/eWGwcRqfPe
— Elisha Maldonado (@elishamaldonado) June 22, 2018
— FRANCE 24 (@FRANCE24) June 22, 2018
The Muharrem Ince Factor: Some estimate 2.5 million are joining Muharrem Ince’s rally in Izmir-a CHP stronghold. Lets say it is even half of that, simply mind boggling. Turkey has not seen an election like this in decades. pic.twitter.com/TwwXpAiBvs
— Louis Fishman (@Istanbultelaviv) June 21, 2018
Official travel advice
Links to travel advice on visiting Turkey from the following governments –
Click through here to read our coverage of recent events and developments in Turkey.
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