Election Safety and Combining Ballot Boxes

Is the institutional structure sufficiently trustworthy regarding management and supervision of elections in Turkey? What are the regulations introduced by the Election Safety Law and what are their purpose? What does the decision to move and combine ballot boxes mean? Are the criticisms justified?

In many regards, the snap elections on June 24, 2018 will be an election of firsts for Turkey. Presidential and parliamentary elections will be held concurrently for the first time and some political parties will partake in the elections having formed alliances. At the end of the elections, constitutional amendments approved by a popular vote on April 16, 2017 will fully enter into force, and Turkey will adopt a new government system. With all these aspects, the snap elections in Turkey make the headlines; however, election safety, impartiality, and the legal and administrative measures taken on these matters are also being debated by certain individuals. In the past, similar concerns and claims about election safety and irregularity were raised, as seems to be the case for the upcoming elections. Another first in the upcoming elections is the combining of certain ballot boxes. However, both institutional mechanisms on management and supervision of elections in Turkey, which are directly guaranteed by the Constitution, and the country’s experience of over 70 years in multiparty elections prove that such concerns and claims are unfounded.

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