Democracy has triumphed in Turkey

Published 26.06.2018 01:11

It would be on point to suggest that democracy has triumphed in Turkey in the elections held on June 24. The elections have enjoyed a high turnout that is rarely seen in most countries, including European ones.

In the previous general elections held in November 2015, the total number of registered voters was 56.94 million, and the turnout rate was 85.2 percent as 48.53 million cast ballots. On June 24, this rate increased to 87.5 percent as 52.5 million went to the polls among the total number of 59.34 million voters.

Besides, no serious problem was seen in the election process despite such a high turnout except a few minor issues. In this sense, Turkey set an example for Europe and the rest of the world.

The results are evident. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has won the presidential race in the first round and officially become the first state president of Turkey, according to the new presidential system, until 2023. Also, the People's Alliance comprised of the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) has become the majority in the Parliament. So, it can be contended that Turkey will not confront a problem regarding stability until 2023.

I have no doubts that investors will see and calculate the results effectively.

Hopefully, some politicians have been able to draw lessons from the election results. Particularly some European politicians and administrators who resorted in every way to hamper the victory of Erdoğan and the AK Party, but their attempts remained futile as in the previous years. I hope this will be the last instance and that they have learned something about democracy in Turkey. The Turkish electorate did not tolerate their attempts of intervening in the democratic elections, as such efforts have backfired.

European politics and media can maintain their anti-Erdoğan and anti-AK Party stance as they wish, but this will not by any means favor anyone, including the EU and European countries. They should bear in mind that they cannot achieve any of their targets with such a stance. Marking new beginnings in the aftermath of the elections will be the most favorable option for Europe and the EU. And Turkey is already open to dialogue in this respect.

Turkey will undergo a period of significant changes and reforms following the elections. Cooperating with Turkey from now on will be a great chance for the continent of Europe, as the country will operate better and become stronger thanks to the new system as an EU candidate and a NATO ally.

The European countries must seize this opportunity. But above all, the new Turkey expects honesty from the EU. The country expects the opening of the chapters for negotiation, visa exemption, a fair renewal of the Customs Union Agreement and the end of the support provided to the European legs of terror groups that threaten Turkey such as the PKK and the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ).

The EU countries who choose to cooperate with Turkey regarding these issues will have an upper hand in economic terms. Likewise, Turkey will continue to be a major partner to the EU with regards to the refugee challenge, which has caused a serious crisis in the EU. Now, it is time to make a new beginning in relations by respecting democracy in Turkey and set relations towards a positive course in view of future objectives.

I hope the EU, the European Parliament and other European institutions and countries got this message on the night of June 24. The heinous statements issued by some people including the European Parliament Turkey rapporteur Kati Piri must not be taken seriously in the EU from now on as we have already stopped listening to them. We have learned to pay no attention to such baseless statements as they are not contributing to anything.

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