The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) is the only political party that receives a considerable number of votes from every region of the country. Thus, in terms of electoral support, the AK Party has always been either the first or the second political party of Turkey's constituencies.
In the regions inhabited by the Kurdish electorates, the AK Party currently receives 40 percent of the total electorate, while the People's Democratic Party (HDP) receives 50 percent.
The HDP's overall electoral success, which rose to the level of 13 percent during the Resolution Process, has now regressed to the level of 8 percent or 9 percent. The temporary electoral success of the HDP derived from two main reasons:
lFirst, the HDP is not an ordinary political party, but an extraordinary one that is backed by a terrorist organization, i.e. the PKK. Having dominated the region for 40 years through repression and violence, the PKK abused the AK Party Government's Resolution Process to consolidate its power in the region. Directly targeting the AK Party's political power, the PKK blockaded the region.
Secondly, thanks to the Resolution Process, the HDP's leadership adopted a political discourse for a while that embraced the whole country, instead of its former separatist, racist and Leninist discourse. Thus, the HDP took the votes of some of the non-Kurdish electorate in Anatolia.
Yet, when the Syrian civil war erupted, the Iranian leadership assembled the leaders of the PKK and Jalal Talabani to disrupt the ongoing Resolution Process. By leaving the Kurdish-populated regions of Syria to the control of the PKK, Iran assisted the rise of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), the PKK's counterpart, in Syria. Despite the Iranian aspirations, the PYD has always been under the strict control of the United States.
In the last general elections, the AK Party took 1 million votes that were previously taken by the HDP. The loss of votes led to a bitter controversy between the leaders of the PKK and the HDP. The PKK's leadership announced that the electoral success of the HDP solely derived from the PKK's political power, while the HDP's leadership appeared incapable of developing an independent political position vis-à-vis the PKK. At the end, the HDP has emerged merely the spokesman of the PKK.
Taking serious lessons from the Syrian civil war, Turkey made crucial moves against the PKK to such an extent that the terrorist organization could have not realized any significant terrorist attacks in the country. According to the research realized by the GENAR Research Institute, 25 percent of the HDP's electorate approved of the state's military operations against the PKK. In fact, the people of the region have been content with the termination of the PKK's repression and violence in the region.
Now, the present electoral alliance between the AK Party and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) turns our attention to the Kurdish electorate. The question is simple: Will the Kurdish votes leave the AK Party due to its alliance with the MHP?
First of all, it is crucial to not to forget that the MHP did not sabotage the resolution process. Instead, the MHP's leadership acted prudently. Thus, during the referendum realized for the introduction of the presidential system, although the AK Party acted in concert with the MHP, its votes in the region rose by 500 thousand votes.
Moreover, the Kurdish electors do not approve the PKK's violent actions and invited the HDP to adopt an independent political position from the terrorist organization. As long as the HDP's leadership continues to act like a spokesman of the PKK, its votes cannot exceed the level of 8 or 9 percent.
In conclusion, the electoral alliance between the AK Party and the MHP cannot radically influence the AK Party's political support in the region, simply because the votes of the Kurdish electorate have already been consolidated in advance of the elections.
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