Turkish diaspora to begin casting postal votes in pivotal presidential election

Turkish diaspora to begin casting postal votes in pivotal presidential election

The Turkish diaspora will begin mail-in balloting for upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections, with the main vote set for June

Turkey diaspora vote

Photo: TRT

The Turkish diaspora will begin mail-in balloting for upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections, with the main vote set for June 24. Incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his People’s Alliance—a coalition between Erdogan’s conservative Justice and Development and the Nationalist Movement Parties—remain the favourite to clinch the snap election, currently polling at 49%.

A narrowly-passed referendum that changed Turkey’s government from a parliamentary system to an executive presidency will come into effect after the election.

Turkey’s economy has been overheating with soaring inflation in 2018—the lira has devalued some 20% since January over fears that Erdogan could interfere with the monetary system. With price levels climbing, national discontent could lead to a run-off presidential election if Erdogan cannot claim an outright majority.

If this happens, the opposition could rally behind a single candidate, likely the liberal Republican People’s Party’s Muharrem Ince, who is polling at 31%. However, Erdogan, polling at 48%, remains likely to secure victory, either on June 24 or after a run-off. In a tightening race, Erdogan will ramp up nationalist campaigning targeted at the diaspora vote, as an estimated 6 million Turks live abroad.

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