Letter to the Editor

Turkish Embassy

Manila,18 August 2018

Editor-In-Chief Mindanao Times

With reference to the article entitled “Political Islam won the Turkey’s presidential election” by Aland Mizell which were published on your online news portal on 25 June 2018, we would like to inform the following:

The Presidential and 27th term Parliamentary elections in Turkey, held on 24 June 2018, were conducted in compliance with free democratic election standards and with an exemplary voter turnout of 88 percent. Marking confidence in our democracy and in line with the usual practice, international observers have also been invited for these elections. The observers, enjoying our full cooperation, have successfully performed their missions and in various statements have confirmed that the security of ballot boxes has been assured and the elections were held in a transparent, free, pluralist and fair manner in accordance with international standards. The elections reaffirmed the strong attachment of the Turkish people to the democracy as well as the rule of law and fundamental freedoms.

As for Mr Mizell’s claims regarding the People’s Democratic Party (I-IDP). we would like to point out that under the principle of the rule of law, everybody is equal before the laws. If there is a well-sustained suspicion that a law might have been breached, it is the prosecutor’s responsibility to launch proceedings. The proceedings against the individuals mentioned in the article as “imprisoned parliamentarians, mayors” are not related with performance of their official duties and conducted in connection with criminal charges against them.

We would like to bring to your kind attention that the human rights, the rule of law and the long-standing secular democracy in Turkey have been reinforced by the new governmental system established after the recent elections, and Turkey will continue honour its obligations under international law.

We hope that the foregoing information would alleviate any possible misinformation regarding the elections and we would appreciate if you could publish this letter in your newspaper.

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Melek Di4en Seymenoglu Counsellor

Turkish Embassy in Manila

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