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Turkish mayor's conviction unites opposition, but challenger to Erdogan unclear

Turkey's opposition leaders are rallying around the case of Ekrem Imamoglu, whose conviction seems to have kicked off the campaign for next year’s elections.
YASIN AKGUL/AFP via Getty Images

ISTANBUL — The prison sentence and political ban handed to the opposition mayor of Istanbul has thrown Turkish politics into turmoil as people grapple with the implications for next year’s presidential election. 

The sentence issued Wednesday against Ekrem Imamoglu of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) is widely considered a bid by the government to prevent him from standing against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a vote scheduled for June. 

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