President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
A genomics expert warned that Turkey faces a ticking bomb as it gradually relaxes its COVID-19 precautions. The expert noted that if the curfew on seniors isn't lifted carefully, a second wave of infections could emerge. “If these groups go outside, there won’t be a wave, there will be a tsunami," he told.
According to an annual report on rights violations in the country prepared by the Human Rights Association (İHD), eight people were killed in unsolved murders in Turkey in 2019. "The last five years have become a period that the regime became increasingly authoritarian and the official ideology is being attempted to brought to life fully," the İHD said in the report released on May 5.
The votes of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and its ally Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) fell below 50 percent, according to a poll carried out by AREA Research. The People's Alliance formed by the AKP and the MHP were seen to be getting 45.6 percent of votes, with the AKP gathering the majority 35.8 percent. The MHP was seen to be failing to pass the 10 percent election threshold.
MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli has praised Turkey's executive presidential system by saying that the results of it are "dazzling." "The new system has a firm basis with its institutions, rules and principles. Its implementation is healthy and the results are dazzling," Bahçeli said in a written statement on May 5.
Istanbul prosecutors have launched an investigation into dissident writer Ragıp Zarakolu over an opinion piece in which he criticized President Erdoğan via comparing him to former Prime Minister Adnan Menderes, who was executed by hanging. The writer is accused of "sending a subliminal message calling for a coup attempt." Zarakolu addressed the accusations saying that he had stood up against coups his whole life and his article had been greatly misinterpreted by the gov't.
Prof. Tevfik Özlü from the Health Ministry's Science Committee has said that Turkey can return to normal in three months if measures implemented against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continue to be abided by. "We can see that the outbreak is waning in not only Turkey, but in the world. We are heading towards a period that's appropriate for discussing normalization. Life needs to return to normal and we can't normalize by sitting at home," Özlü said.
Businessman accused of illegal lobbying says he hired Flynn after failing to convince Turkish gov’t to do so
Turkish businessman Ekim Alptekin, who was accused of illegal lobbying, has said that he tried to convince the Turkish government to hire the Flynn Intel Group following the July 15, 2016 failed coup attempt, but stepped in himself after failing to do so. "I tried to convince the government and at some point I thought I convinced them, but it was a very busy time for them as well and it didn't push through soon enough. So that's when I stepped in and decided to do it myself and it was all very quick," he said.
A number of opposition parties told Duvar that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) can't risk holding early elections, since their support have decreased. According to a CHP official, Erdoğan wouldn't risk his possibility of serving eight more years starting from today.
The International Crisis Group, in report titled "Turkey Wades into Libya’s Troubled Waters" has said that Turkey risks being dragged into a war well beyond what it originally signed up for in Libya. "By intervening, Turkey has further enmeshed itself in an escalating conflict with a complex mix of players and stakeholders," the non-governmental organization said.
Turkish prosecutors have sought a prison sentence of up to three years for journalist and news anchor Fatih Portakal, alleging that he broke the law in a Tweet which implied that the state was borrowing from banks amid economic difficulties exacerbated by the coronavirus epidemic. In their indictment, prosecutors accuse Portakal of violating banking legislation. Portakal hosts one of the most popular programs in the country is among the few dissenting voices that remain in mainstream media.
President Erdoğan has sent a letter to U.S. President Trump, voicing his hope that the U.S. Congress would better understand the strategic importance of their relations, given solidarity and supplies shared during the coronavirus pandemic. “I hope that in the upcoming period, with the spirit of solidarity we have displayed during the pandemic, Congress and the U.S. media will better understand the strategic importance of our relations,” he said.
Newly-released search warrants against Roger Stone revealed a mysterious web of connections, including the Turkish government, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and an individual described as the "Bill Gates of Turkey." The documents showed an attempt to procure damaging information held by the Turkish government.
A recently-released comprehensive biennial report outlining the political and economic transformations of 137 countries has ranked Turkey 77th in terms of political transformation, calling the country a 'de facto dictatorship.' Turkey's political transformation was evaluated as a 'moderate autocracy,' while economic transformation was dubbed 'limited' and governance index was labeled 'weak.'
Ağrı Mayor Savcı Sayan has said that he will send medical masks to Hollywood stars and U.S. President Donald Trump amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Speaking to reporters in his office, Sayan praised Turkey for sending coronavirus medical aid to a number of countries, adding that Hollywood stars and several other celebrities have been experiencing difficulties in "desperation" in finding masks despite their fortune.
Main opposition Deputy Chair Özgür Özel’s parliamentary question about the Presidency’s use of state aircraft was left unanswered as the vice president lacked information and redirected the inquiry to the Transportation and Infrastructure Ministry. The latter noted they had no information on how many aircraft were used by the presidency, or why.