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Turkey goes to the polls today

7 June 2015

Polling day began at 8 a.m. today for the Turkish general elections. A total of 53,741,838 voters will cast their votes.

President Erdogan’s ambition is to introduce a powerful presidential system, however, if the Kurdish oriented Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) gets 10% of the votes, it will be virtually impossible for the AK party to gain the 330 seats required to make the constitutional change.

Election security has been a key concern during campaigning ahead of the June 7 vote. Regarding ballot box security, Öztürk said security personnel will remain 15 meters away from ballot boxes.

The ballot papers must have the Supreme Election Board’s (YSK)’s watermark on them, and voters will not be allowed to enter the polling station with mobile phones, cameras or any kind of communication or screen recording devices. Such devices need to be given to the head of the poll board, while the officials at the ballot boxes do not have the right to conduct body searches for these devices.

The elections will be held across the country in all of its 81 provinces in 174,236 ballot boxes, and a total of 73,988,955 ballot papers has been printed, packaged and sent to the district election boards, YSK head Sadi Güven said on June 2.

The participation of Turkish citizens abroad in the June 7 elections was around 35.9 percent, with 1,031,526 out of a total 2,866,970 electorates abroad casting their votes in 54 countries at 112 voting stations set up by the YSK. While the international polls were closed on the evening of May 31, voting at customs gates and airports for Turkish citizens abroad will continue until 5 p.m. on June 7.

Hurriyet

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