Turkish Press Review - Wednesday, April 02, 2014

As expected, Turkey's Sunday local elections dominate the frontpages of Turkish dailies on Wednesday

As expected, Turkey's Sunday local elections dominate the frontpages of Turkish dailies on Wednesday

ANKARA - Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

It is Wednesday, and, as expected, Sunday's local elections still dominate the front pages of Turkish dailies.

"The never-ending vote counting," says daily MILLIYET -- a theme carried by many other newspapers across the country.

The paper says the elections have not officially come to an end due to appeals that were lodged to election boards from 40 different cities over alleged irregularities in the tallying of the votes.

It says "the closer the results are, the bigger the fight is." 

Daily HURRIYET carries the headline "Vote-guard," referring to the crowds mounting "guard" in some polling centres of the capital, Ankara.

The daily says a group of 2,000 people gathered in front of the official election board's building.

The group blocked the streets surrounding the building and police intervened with water cannons and stun grenades in response, the paper reports.

"The Battle of Ankara, 2014," says the headline of daily RADIKAL, referring to the original Battle of Ankara, fought on early 15th century between the burgeoning Ottoman state and the Timurid Empire.

"Three days since the elections, but the struggle (in Ankara) has not ended yet," the daily says.

It reports the fraud claims asserted by the Republican People's Party (CHP) candidate Mansur Yavas, and adds incumbent Justice and Development (AK) Party mayor Melih Gokcek is confident despite this.

"I will receive my mandate by Friday," the paper quotes Gokcek as saying.

In Ankara, with more than 99% of the votes having been tallied, Gokcek was poised to retain control of the Turkish capital after polling 44.74 percent of the votes, closely followed by Yavas, at 43.81 percent.

The race in Ankara became increasingly tense after 60 percent of the votes were counted.

Gokcek had been leading with a substantial margin in the early hours of vote counting, but as the ballots began to arrive from the upper-class district of Cankaya, Yavas gradually closed the gap and was eventually breathing down Gokcek's neck.

One of the few Turkish dailies that greeted readers with a headline not about the elections, VATAN highlighted an old woman's struggle to resist a plan to replace a children's park in her neighborhood with a building.

Kiymet Peker of the northwestern city of Edirne held a sit-in in front of a bulldozer that arrived in the park, saying "I won't let you demolish this park."

Kiymet translates as "value" in English, and the paper's headline is a pun on that: "The most valuable of Turkey."

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