Wednesday, July 25, 2007


"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!"
~ Benjamin Franklin.

On Monday Özgür Gündem published a list of the Thousand Hopes (DTP) candidates and the list contained 23 names.

Now, it should only contain 22 names. Here's what happened:

In Turkey, there are 14 customs, or border, stations in which people, mainly guest workers from European countries, can vote. In this recent election, 226,784 valid votes came in from in these customs stations representing 14 different parties with the following percentages:

ATP 0.60 %,
BTP 0.36%,
SP 2.99%,
İP 0.49%,
CHP 17.75%,
HYP 0.35%,
ÖDP 0.46%,
GP 2.29%,
DP 2.73%,
MHP 14.74 %,
AK Parti 56.75%,
EMEP 0.23%,
TKP 0.18 %.

The Higher Election Board (YSK) declared it would divide the customs votes by some kind of mystery math known only to itself --because it's not clearly explained anywhere--and apply the votes throughout the country.

In Culemêrg (Hakkari) AKP got 29.000 votes and independent candidates got 43.000. According to these results Hakkari should have two independent and one AKP parliamentarian. The Thousand Hopes (DTP) independent candidate Sebahattin Suğvacı recieved 14,677 votes and passed the AKP candidate Özbek by 45 votes. Hence the 23-member independent list that ÖG posted on Monday.

However, by means of mystery math and the customs votes, the YSK applied 232 votes to AKP’s Culemêrg (Hakkari) district, so that AKP wins one more seat from Hakkari, unseating Sebahattin Suğvacı.

This means that voters not from Culemêrg effectively voted in and for Culemêrg.

It was AKP that insisted that everyone vote in their hometown in a political move designed by AKP to screw CHP out of votes but now, in a move designed to screw DTP out of votes, YSK applies non-resident AKP votes to Culemêrg, thus undercutting the residents of Culemêrg and their political will.

If AKP were consistent in its policies, it would have insisted that the customs votes be applied to the hometowns of the customs voters.

This means that there are officially only 22 DTP parliamentarians-elect and who knows how many others AKP will try to unseat before the final official results are announced on 27 July.

Ah, well . . . yet another milestone in the long democratic march of the Turkish Republic.

What Berxwedan said:

I’m not an optimist. I’m a Kurd. I believe that the Kurdish independent MP’s will do everything in their power to raise hell in the parliament, and I believe that they will fight for every oppressed voice in Turkey. Will the Turkish ruling AKP party take a brave step to solve the Kurdish question? Well, didn’t Erdogan “try” that in Amed (Diyarbakir?) He did, and we saw increased Turkish military operations where Kurdish guerrillas were killed by chemical weapons and people protesting against this, were gunned down indiscriminately.

Amen, brother. They're already off to a bad start.

Many thanks to the heval who poured through all the Turkish media reports to help clarify this situation as much as possible.


Hevallo said...

Ummm....interesting. And also for some strange reason many people have told me that they were not able to vote for the Independents at the airports, while they could for any other party!

Mizgîn said...

Okay, I"m not surprised, Hevallo. We were speculating here that what should have happened is that each customs voting place should have had ballots from every place in Turkey and people should have had to prove their hometown in order to vote and in order to have their vote applied to their hometown.

I also thought it was very strange that no independents turned up in the results, especially since there are many Kurds in Diaspora in Europe.

This is a game. Just as AKP put forth Gül to purposely taunt the secularists, and knowing that Gül's candidacy would be rejected, then they used this to play the victim with the electorate. Then they changed the ballots in an effort to thwart the independents. Then they required voting in one's hometown to thwart CHP . . .

They make up or change the rules as they go along and they will do the same thing in attempting to gain the cooperation of others, such as the independents, when they want to pass their own important legislation. After they have gotten what they wanted through cooperation, they will turn on the independents.

Their feet will have to be held to the fire and it will be essential to get more from them in return for deals than their cheap words.

Remember Amed, August 2005.