Hamit Emrah Beriş

Hamit Emrah Beriş

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  • The People’s Alliance’s senior members, the AK Party and the MHP, have worked together seamlessly since the very beginning. They did not allow crises to erupt ahead of the 2023 elections either. In this sense, the People’s Alliance demonstrated unity – whereas the Nation Alliance was bogged down in internal strife. It is possible to argue that the ruling alliance could signal unity mainly due to its perception by the electorate as a sincere and straightforward group. Specifically, the People’s Alliance did not pursue short-term interests or signal its intention to change its course when it could negotiate from a position of strength. Another contributing factor was the complete agreement between the AK Party and the MHP on the ‘presidency’ system of government. Whereas the Nation Alliance pledged to adopt an ‘augmented’ parliamentary system, Erdoğan and Bahçeli insisted that Türkiye must not drift away from its current political system. Accordingly, one might argue that the People’s Alliance shall remain intact unless one of those two movements changes its mind about the presidential system. That is obviously not the only factor, yet there is reason to believe that the AK Party and the MHP will continue to collaborate as long as the former’s policies and vision for the future appeal to the partner.
  • In 2023, Türkiye will celebrate the centennial of the establishment of the republic and will also hold a crucial election. The 2023 elections are one of the most important in Türkiye’s history. Four main topics will determine the fate of the elections: refugees, the economy, rising nationalism, and the Kurdish question. There are serious differences of opinion between the government and opposition blocs regarding the solution to these problems. Concerning refugee policies, Türkiye is still the country hosting the highest number of displaced persons under temporary protection in the world. While policies against immigrants are rising all over the world, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has adopted a humanitarian approach in terms of refugee policies. Erdoğan has also used his power of persuasion in society in terms of solving economic problems. In many parts of the world, the combination of refugees and economic problems manifested itself in the form of reactionary nationalism. Erdoğan, on the other hand, used nationalist rhetoric in an integrative way, blending the concepts of native (yerli) and national (milli). Although the opposition has not demonstrated a clear approach to these issues, it positioned itself directly opposite Erdoğan. Likewise, recently, a new approach has been adopted in terms of the solution to the Kurdish question, apart from the PKK. The 2023 elections will show which of the approaches of the government or the opposition wings coincide with Turkish society’s expectations.