Former Istanbul mayor denies claims on re-running as MHP candidate

Published 31.10.2018 22:02

A former Istanbul mayor, Bedrettin Dalan, has denied rumors that he will run in the upcoming local elections as the Nationalist Movement Party's (MHP) candidate.

Dalan, who served as the mayor of Istanbul between 1984 and 1989 and also one of the founders of the Homeland Party (ANAP), said yesterday that no one should believe in such claims. He added that he does not think that the MHP seriously thought of him as the candidate.

Turkish media outlets reported yesterday that sources close to the MHP were saying that the party will show Dalan as their mayor candidate for Istanbul. Expressing that no one from the party reached out to him with such an offer, Dalan said that even if they offer him the candidacy, he would reject it.

He also repeatedly said that he will not participate in politics ever again due to the troubles he has been through all these years, including the Ergenekon trials. Ergenekon was the alleged name of a secretive terrorist group in a sham case filed by Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ)-linked prosecutors. Following the staged "uncovering" of the group in 2007, there was a barrage of detentions of many well-known figures. However, further investigation showed the claims against such a group were based on false evidence and fabricated charges and was a plot to imprison the critics of FETÖ. Today, FETÖ's infiltrators are being charged with being behind three separate coup attempts since 2013.

"I would need to have lost my mind to re-enter into the politics," Dalan further said.

The MHP will participate in the elections in every electoral district of Turkey with its own candidates, Devlet Bahçeli, the head of the party said last week, stating that there will be no alliance with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party). The two parties previously joined forces in the "People's Alliance" for the June 24 presidential and parliamentary elections. Since Bahçeli's statement, the party has been evidently struggling to find candidates particularly in major provinces like Istanbul, İzmir and Ankara.

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