Analysis 20 Nov 17

Turkey’s ‘Iron Lady’ Poses Challenge to Erdogan Regime

A new party led by Meral Aksener, a determined woman from a Balkan background, promises to shake up Turkey’s politics and give President Erdogan a run for his money.

BIRN Team
BIRN
Sarajevo, Ankara, Istanbul
Meral Aksener hold a speech in 2016 in Ankara.Photo: Yıldız Yazıcıoğlu/Wikimedia

Opponents of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spy new hope that the country will return one day to the parliamentary form of democracy, which has been scrapped following controversial changes to the constitution.

Several opinion polls, made public in recent days, show that the newly established Iyi [Good] Party has garnered enough public support already to challenge the current political establishment.

The party was only officially launched late last month, with the slogan “Turkey will be good” and a bright sun as its logo. Political pluralism, the rule of law, freedom of speech and patriotic values are its core principles.

Its 61-year-old leader, Meral Aksener, a prominent right-wing politician and former interior minister, is seen as a serious rival to Erdogan ahead of the next presidential elections in 2019.

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