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PES President visits Turkey ahead of upcoming elections

meeting with CHP    meeting with HDP
Sergei Stanishev, PES President has arrived in Turkey to support PES member parties CHP and HDP ahead of the elections on 1 November. He is holding a series of meetings to discuss the upcoming elections. Yesterday, on 22 October, he met with Kemal Kilicdaroglu, Leader of CHP, and Selahattin Demirtas, Leader of the Kurdish party HDP.

The PES is convinced that our sister parties CHP and HDP can provide a real alternative for a new Turkey based on fundamental values such as rule of law and freedom of media.

Sergei Stanishev, PES President said:

We are here to show solidarity with our sister parties. CHP and HDP stand for a forward-looking, European-facing Turkey. They are our solid partners and we stand ready to cooperate with them in the future. With this visit we want to show them, and all Turkish people, that they have our utmost support. With its experience and history, we believe that CHP is in an excellent position to guide Turkey through these uncertain times.

Turkey has been affected by the refugee crisis more than any European country. We acknowledge that the status quo is not fair. Europe needs to take its responsibility when it comes to receiving refugees, while Turkey needs to ensure that the majority of those seeking protection can do so close to home. We acknowledge Turkey’s burden and are ready to work together with CHP to guarantee Turkey’s security and share the responsibility.

Turkey suffered an enormous tragedy less than two weeks ago with the Ankara attacks. HDP in particular suffered tremendous losses. For that we offer our sincerest condolences for the friends and family members lost. These attacks, and others before them, were designed to destabilize Turkish society and stoke fears. These fears cannot paralyze the democratic process in the country.

People living in the predominantly Kurdish areas in the Southeast of Turkey must be able to vote freely and securely. The groundbreaking turnout of 86% during the last elections was an inspiration to many European countries. We hope to see the same results this time. We condemn all efforts of the government and other parties to get in the way of free and fair elections.

PES President Sergei Stanishev visited Turkey accompanied by Deputy Secretary General Giacomo Filibeck and Advisor Karen Mets.

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