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Disgruntled Kurds emerge as potential kingmakers in Turkey’s polls

Kurdish frustration with Ankara’s shift from a policy that favored settlement with the Kurds to hard-line nationalism could sway the outcome of critical snap polls in June.
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As Turkey braces for snap elections on June 24, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) risks losing the support of an important segment of its base — conservative Kurds — due to its sharp shift to hard-line nationalism. A major question now is how to lure the vote of the resentful Kurds, who are emerging as a key player in the elections.

Recent surveys suggest that Kurdish voters could become kingmakers in the crucial legislative and presidential polls, which will mark Turkey’s transition to a new governance system headed by an omnipotent president. In an unprecedented flurry of contacts, opposition parties are looking for various forms of cooperation to beat President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in what many see as the last chance to save Turkish democracy.

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