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Bagrat Estukyan: Erdogan's loss in major cities not unexpected
2019-04-01 18:12:13

Hasmik Martirosyan
Public Radio of Armenia

The party of Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lost control of capital Ankara and other large cities including Istanbul, Izmir and Antalyam in local elections in a setback after 16 years in power.

Nationally, the alliance led by the President's Justice and Development party (AKP) has won more than 51% of the vote in the municipal elections.

Bagrat Estukyan, editor-in-chief of the Armenian language department of Istanbul's Agos newspaper, says the results are not surprising. He is confident that the hard social-economic situation in the country could not but affect the vote.

“Candidates of the major cities were largely expected to lose positions in the major cities. The main reasons of this include the economic crisis, unemployment and inflation. People are somewhat disappointed in the ruling Justice and Development party,” Estukyan told Public Radio of Armenia.

Both Republican People’s Party (CHP) and Erdogan's AKP claim victory in the city. The AKP has been saying its candidate, former Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, was ahead by 4,000 votes.

Expert of the Armenian Institute of International and Security Affairs Hayk Gabrielyan says after the electoral processes the authorities will further strengthen the wave of pressure on the opposition