CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu signals candidacy in presidential elections

CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has signaled his candidacy in the presidential elections. "I'd be honored if the alliance approves of this," he said.

Duvar English 

Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has signaled his candidacy in the presidential elections. 

"I'd be honored if the alliance approves of this. This issue has never been discussed. It's not right to make an individual decision," Kılıçdaroğlu told broadcaster Haber Global on Dec. 14, adding that a candidate will be decided on after discussions within the alliance. 

Although elections are scheduled to be held in June 2023, the opposition Nation Alliance, which is spearheaded by the CHP and the right-wing Good (İYİ) Party, has been calling on the government to hold early elections, citing the current economic crisis. The People's Alliance, consisting of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), has been insisting that the elections be held as scheduled. 

During the budget talks in parliament on Dec. 6, numerous AKP deputies asked Kılıçdaroğlu whether he'll run against President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the elections. The main opposition leader refrained from answering. 

On Dec. 15, Kılıçdaroğlu was asked whether he would support the candidacies of Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu and Ankara Mayor Mansur Yavaş.

"I'm not against that. Our friends have duties and are working now. They're successfully governing Istanbul and Ankara," he said. 

While the opposition doesn't name anyone as a potential candidate, İYİ Party leader Meral Akşener has been voicing her candidacy for the prime ministerial elections after Turkey switches back to a parliamentary system from the current executive presidential one. 

"Being the prime minister would suit Akşener. She is experienced and is a former minister," Kılıçdaroğlu said.