Erodgan accused of stuffing the ballot box. Hundreds of thousands if not millions of votes were allowed to be counted in the recent Turkish election. The problem, they were not certified as required. When the vote appeared to be close, Turkish henchman at the request of Erdogan poured the illegal votes into the ballot box. The opposition party does not recognize the results as official. However, subsequent to the recent coup Erdogan has purged the opposition by firing judges, police and military personnel; this does not included opposition media groups. When all is said and done the bottom line here is to boot Turkey out of NATO, there is no other choice.
A village leader shoves four voting slips into a ballot box. An unknown arm marks three slips with a “yes” vote. An unknown hand adds five more. An election official validates a pile of voting slips — hours after they were meant to be validated.
These are four of the scenes captured in unverified videos that have helped stoke accusations of voting fraud in polling stations across Turkey during Sunday’s referendum to expand the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Mr. Erdogan’s “yes” campaign has claimed victory by a small margin — 51.4 percent to 48.6 — in a vote that further insulates the president from scrutiny and tightens his grip on one of the most influential countries in the region.
But while Mr. Erdogan has turned his claimed victory into a political reality, the legitimacy of his win is still in question. Opposition parties say the vote was rigged. The main opposition party formally asked Turkey’s electoral commission Tuesday afternoon to reassess the contents of multiple ballot boxes and — in a separate appeal — to annul the entire poll result. And two major international observation missions have a list of concerns over irregularities during the campaign and on the day of the vote.
International monitors, such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe (COE), issued scathing reports on the referendum to create an executive presidency and eliminate checks and balances.
The referendum occurred in a climate of fear. Under Turkey’s current state of emergency, Erdogan arrested 45,000 oppositionists and dismissed 130,000 civil servants. Purges negatively affected the political environment. “No” campaigners were threatened and called “terrorist sympathizers.”
According to OSCE media monitors, the “yes” campaign dominated the state-run media. Intimidation led to widespread self-censorship. About 150 journalists are in jail, more than any other country, and about 160 media outlets were shut down.
Kurdish voters were disenfranchised. Approximately 500,000 Kurds in the Southeast are displaced and homeless as a result of attacks by Turkey’s security services. They were ineligible to vote because they could not register at an address.
The Turkish government jailed 13 Kurdish members of parliament on terrorism charges and took direct control of 82 Kurdish municipalities, incarcerating elected mayors. As many as 5,000 local Kurdish activists were also arrested.