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Turkey's opposition licks wounds with eye on next year's local elections

A morale-sapping defeat in the presidential and parliamentary elections has Turkey's opposition fretting over the March polls, when it will have to defend its 2019 municipal wins.
BULENT KILIC/AFP via Getty Images

ISTANBUL — After a bruising election that saw its hopes of unseating President Recep Tayyip Erdogan dashed, Turkey’s opposition must now regroup for local polls in less than a year. 

The presidential and parliamentary elections that ended with Erdogan’s victory on Sunday — extending his 20-year rule for a further five years — were deeply disappointing for an opposition bloc that had high hopes of removing the president. 

But the Nation Alliance of six opposition parties, also known as the Table of Six, saw Kemal Kilicdaroglu fail in his presidential bid while Erdogan and his allies retained control of the parliament. 

The opposition’s optimism had been buoyed by the unfavorable conditions facing Erdogan going into the elections, namely the worst economic crisis in two decades and the fallout over catastrophic earthquakes in February. 

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