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From today’s Turkish press


UPCOMING PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS Murat Yetkin highlights the president’s role in the upcoming June parliamentary elections in centre-left Radikal: "For President Erdogan, preserving the AKP's [ruling Justice and Development Party] power alone is not a criterion for the success for this election. Erdogan expects an AKP majority to bring him a constitution that will pave the way for his super-presidency. This election is so important to him that it cannot be left to PM Davutoglu. Secretly or openly, Erdogan will make speeches to the people almost every day and expect them to be broadcast by as many national TV stations as possible. Thus, the AKP’s election campaign will be pursued via two channels; officially by Davutoglu and de facto by Erdogan."

Cuneyt Arcayurek anticipates further staged violence in secular, Kemalist Cumhuriyet: "If the [pro-Kurdish leftist alliance] HDP passes the 10% electoral threshold, the AKP will be unable to insist on a new constitution providing for a presidential regime and its ability to preserve its sole power will be in danger. This is why both the PKK [Kurdistan Workers' Party] and those in the state who want the AKP to receive the necessary number of votes might stage terror incidents similar to what happened in Agri [where the Turkish army and PKK militants clashed this week], so that the HDP may be blamed and fail to pass the threshold."

Mustafa Unal is unimpressed by the AKP’s electoral manifesto in moderate, pro-Islamic, pro-Gulen Zaman: "Voters do not choose parties by reading long documents [the AKP's recent elections’ manifesto]. While the presidential system was being developed, there were expectations that it would be explained to the public, and that it would then be debated so as to ensure that the citizens know what they are voting for. Obviously, the issue that the government and opposition parties will talk about most is the presidential system. The manifesto is far from answering these questions."


EU VOTE ON ARMENIAN GENOCIDE: Sami Kohen takes a relatively calm view of the EU parliament's vote on the Armenian genocide issue in centrist Milliyet: "The decisions taken by the European Parliament are not legally binding. It means that this vote is unlikely to damage the Turkish-EU negotiation process, or pave the way for any sanctions. This is why Ankara did not panic so much, apart from the official reaction to the decision. But it may also be observed that Turkey has an 'image problem' as a result of its domestic issues and foreign policy shifts."

Resul Tosun denies the genocide altogether in centre-right, pro-government Star: "First the Pope and then the EU parliament have used the word 'genocide' to describe the 1915 incidents. Since it is the 100th anniversary of these events, we will witness similar developments later this year. The goal is obvious. It is to corner Turkey and eventually demand compensation and territory. But this is impossible because the reasons and approach are fatally flawed. There was no genocide, and history cannot be written based on the Pope's or Western parliaments' decisions."

Ibrahim Kiras detects a Christian conspiracy in centrist Vatan: "The EU parliament which uses every opportunity to deny accusations of being a 'Christian club', has accepted a draft decision that includes a reference to the Pope's words! There is nothing surprising here. The Europeans’ approach to the Armenian issue has been in place for the last 100 years as part of its 'Christian solidarity'."



The Iranian press does not appear on Friday



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