YSK expected to release official, reasoned decision on Istanbul polls this week

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 21.05.2019 00:04

The Supreme Election Council (YSK) is expected to announce its detailed decision this week with its reasoning for annulling the March 31 mayoral elections in Istanbul.

Following yesterday's meeting it was decided that the YSK would delay releasing the official reasoning from yesterday to later in the week.

In an earlier decision made by the YSK on the polls, it was stated that some chairs and members of balloting committees were not government employees, hence violating the election law.

It was also stated that there were unsigned result documents to an extent that affected the final results of the elections.

It was also reported that the YSK completed the writing of a more than 200-page document that explains the detailed reasons behind the decision about the Istanbul elections. As the four YSK members who voted against the decision to cancel the March 31 elections in Istanbul share their dissenting opinions, the final decision will be announced. It may take a few days for the completion of the procedure. Following the YSK's decision on May 6 to annul the mayoral elections in Istanbul due to irregularities and unlawfulness, the detailed decision with reasoning has been awaited for two weeks.

Millions of Turkish voters cast their votes nationwide on March 31 in local elections to choose mayors, city council members and other officials for the next five years.

The mayoral elections in Istanbul witnessed a very close race between the People's Alliance candidate Justice and Development Party's (AK Party) Binali Yıldırım and the Nation Alliance candidate of the Republican People's Party (CHP) Ekrem İmamoğlu.

Elections in Istanbul saw İmamoğlu being awarded the certificate of the election with only a 13,729-vote difference. The decision was followed by lengthy discussions and objections by parties demanding a do-over election due to irregularities and unlawfulness.

After the elections, the AK Party submitted an extraordinary objection to the YSK for the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Maltepe Municipality and Büyükçekmece Municipality to cancel and redo the Istanbul municipal election.

In their objections to the March 31 Istanbul elections, the ruling AK Party had submitted claims that some chairs and members of balloting committees were not government employees, violating the law. The YSK ruled seven against four in favor and annulled the results of the mayoral election in Istanbul. The redo election will be held on June 23 with voter lists from recent local elections remaining unchanged.

The YSK also rejected the objection regarding the four YSK reserve members' participation in the voting process. The YSK consists of seven full members and four reserve members. All 11 members voted during the decision process on the annulment of the mayoral elections in Istanbul.

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