Turmen rejects presidential candidacy for left-wing HDP
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
ANKARA - Riza Turmen, the lawmaker from main opposition Republican People's Party CHP, declined to be the candidate of the leftist HDP People's Democracy Party for the August 10 presidential elections in Turkey.
Turmen, acknowledging HDP for choosing him, remarked that "CHP is making efforts to become a more libertarian, democratic and a social democrat party." He added that he prefers to continue "this struggle with CHP."
The pro-Kurdish HDP, although politically aligned with the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) - another pro-Kurdish party whose entire parliamentary caucus joined the HDP on 28 April - was established with the aim of winning broad support across Turkey and becoming an influence in Turkish politics, contrary to BDP which has a strong Kurdish voter base mostly from eastern Turkey.
Turmen said some of his views on freedom, democracy and equality are in line with HDP's position.
HDP leaders said early this week that the nominee of the CHP and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Turkish diplomat Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu is more or less from the same political lineage as the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the ruling AK Party's most possible but so far unannounced candidate.
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