+++ P.O. (BBG) Turkey Election Overhaul Seen Boosting Erdogan Gains Momentum


Mr Erdogan is a dictator.

And someone one is even advised not to have tea.

But i would have tea every day with Mr Muhammed Fethullah Gülen Hocaefendi.

That has recently been made stateless by Turkey.

It says it all.


«Fethullah Gülen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

M. Fethullah Gülen

Gülen in 2016

Fethullah Gülen
 27 April 1941 (age 76)
Pasinler, Erzurum, Turkey

Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Turkey (as of 2017, stateless)



Main interests
 Islamic thought, Islamic conservatism, Turkish politics, anti-communism, Turkish nationalism, education, interfaith dialogue among the People of the Book, Sufism

Notable ideas
 Gülen movement

Muhammed Fethullah Gülen Hocaefendi (Turkish:  – the honorific Hoca Efendi, used among followers, translates to “respected teacher”); born 27 April 1941) is a Turkish preacher, former imam, writer, and political figure. He is the founder of the Gülen movement (known as Hizmet meaning service in Turkish), which is 3 to 6 million strong in Turkey and has an empire of affiliated banks, media, construction companies, and schools, especially those providing primary and secondary education, in Turkey (in which business entities and foundations have been closed down by the Turkish government by the thousands in 2017) and in Africa, Central Asia, the Americas, and Europe. Hizmet’s most populous organization is a moderate Islamic advocacy group, Alliance for Shared Values. Gulen lives in exile in the United States, residing in Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania. He is sought by the Turkish government for alleged involvement in the 2016 coup attempt in Turkey.

Gülen is actively involved in the societal debate concerning the future of the Turkish state, and Islam in the modern world. He has been described in the English-language media as an imam “who promotes a tolerant Islam which emphasises altruism, hard work and education” and as “one of the world’s most important Muslim figures.” However, James Jeffrey, former American ambassador in Ankara, has claimed that the Gülen movement, aside from its “legal and visible” activities, had infiltrated the Turkish armed forces, police and judiciary.

The Gülen movement (often referred as Gulenists) has been characterized as a civil society group promoting education, religious tolerance, and building social networks. Having shared a major goal of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of empowering religious individuals in civil life officially disenfranchised under then existing law in secular Turkey, Gulen and his movement were aligned with Erdogan prior to 2013. The alliance was destroyed after the 2013 corruption investigations in Turkey. Erdoğan accused Gülen of being behind the corruption investigations. He is currently on Turkey’s most-wanted-terrorist list and is accused of leading what the current Turkish officials call the Gülenist Terror Organisation (Fethullahçı Terör Örgütü, FETÖ). A Turkish criminal court issued an arrest warrant for Gülen Turkey is demanding the extradition of Gülen from the United States. However, U.S. figures in general do not believe he is associated with any terrorist activity, and have requested evidence to be provided by the Turkish Government to substantiate the allegations in the warrant requesting extradition.

Gülen has been described as a Kurdophobic preacher. He was accused of being against the peace process which had aimed to resolve the long-running Kurdish-Turkish conflict. However, Gülen’s supporters dismiss this claim, citing his work with many Kurds.”»

“That’s All Folks!”

Francisco (Abouaf) de Curiel Marques Pereira

(Bloomberg) — Sweeping changes to Turkey’s electoral laws
that could help President Recep Tayyip Erdogan tighten his grip
on power are set to begin their passage through parliament, with
the opposition warning that they would increase the risk of vote
The proposed overhaul comes just over 18 months before the
scheduled date for one of the most pivotal votes in modern
Turkey. When Turks go to the polls next November, or earlier if
plans are advanced, they’ll pick a new parliament and formally
concentrate executive power in the office of the president.
The amendments allow parties to form alliances that would
help them enter parliament, relaxing the current rule that
requires them to secure 10 percent of the vote each. The most
likely beneficiary would be the nationalist MHP, which some
analysts say has lost support since it became a junior partner
to Erdogan’s ruling AKP.
The changes, which lawmakers will begin debating Monday,
will help ensure Erdogan stays at the pinnacle of power as
Turkey begins a controversial transformation from decades of
parliamentary democracy into an executive presidency. Erdogan
has cracked down on political opponents since a failed coup
attempt almost two years ago, and has risked ties with the US
and Europe by launching an offensive against Kurdish militias
inside Syria.
Together the AKP and MHP hold 352 seats in Turkey’s 550-
seat parliament, way above the 276 they need to ensure the bill
becomes law.
Under the alliance’s draft blueprint, authorities would
also be able to appoint government officials to run ballot
stations, relocate election stations on security grounds, let
law-enforcement officials monitor voting, and permit the
counting of unstamped ballot papers — an issue which clouded
the 2017 referendum on presidential rule.

‘Shadow of Guns’

Put together, the measures amount to a “serious threat” to
fair and free elections, the main opposition CHP said in a
statement on Thursday, following meetings with representatives
of eight other parties.
“The risk of holding elections under the shadow of guns
could put voters under pressure,” CHP lawmaker Ugur Bayraktutan
told a parliamentary committee, referring to the prospect of
armed security forces in voting stations.
The government says the changes to the way ballots are
conducted are necessary to secure the vote in Turkey’s southeast
from the influence of the Kurdish separatists.
Every vote could count next year. In the referendum on an
empowered presidency, Erdogan won only narrowly, while most of
his parliamentary landslides were secured with less than 50
percent backing. Under the new system, he’ll need a clear
majority for a first-round victory.

Nationalist Fervor

“The president knows that a small shift in votes could mean
a defeat in a contest he cannot lose,” Wolfango Piccoli, co-
founder of Teneo Intelligence in London, said in an emailed note
on Friday. “Further initiatives to maximize the chances of a
positive outcome on ballot day are likely.”
The fragmented opposition has been left on the “back foot”
by the AKP-MHP alliance, he said.
Erdogan’s party has never called early elections during its
15 years in power, and officials insist there are no plans to go
to the polls before November 2019.
Still, the AKP has surveyed opinion for any signs of
shifting voting intentions. Nationalist fervor has gripped
Turkey since the army launched an offensive against Syrian
Kurdish fighters, and the economy appears to have been put on a
campaign footing.