Turkey: Erdogan Claims Victory, Says Opponents “Will Pay Price”

Turkey’s Prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has declared victory in Sunday’s local elections and said his rivals would “pay the price” for their loss.

Preliminary results showed Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) with 47%, compared to 28% of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and 13% of the Nationalist Movement Party.

At a rally in Ankara in the early hours of Monday, Erdoğan boasted that he and the AKP had overcome a corruption investigation, detaining businessmen and son of Ministers, and leaked audio tapes implicating the Prime Minister in movement of funds and his senior advisors in proposed military intervention in Syria:

These poll results show more than who won, it shows who lost. Immoral politics have lost. Politics on tapes, on false recordings have lost. Immoral and aimless politics have lost.

The Prime Minister continued, “I ask the leader of the opposition if he didn’t have the recordings, what would you have said on your campaign? You only utter lies and false statements.”

And he said ominously, “From tomorrow, there may be some who flee.”

According to the official results, the AKP significantly improved its 2009 vote of 38.8%.

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Scott Lucas is Professor of International Politics at the University of Birmingham and editor-in-chief of EA WorldView. He is a specialist in US and British foreign policy and international relations, especially the Middle East and Iran. Formerly he worked as a journalist in the US, writing for newspapers including the Guardian and The Independent and was an essayist for The New Statesman before he founded EA WorldView in November 2008.

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