Earthquake and Economy Leaving Türkiye -News

Demir, who now lives with his two teenage daughters near his old home in a container city — made up of prefab homes resembling shipping containers — said he would not vote for Erdogan despite his criticism of the government. Apologies for the slow response after the earthquake and after the earthquake. He has pledged to build hundreds of thousands of new homes in the hardest-hit areas.

Elsewhere, Ferdi Baran, whose apartment block was reduced to rubble within seconds in Hatay, said he felt “estranged” from all candidates but was turning to Egypt. Erdogan.

“I’m offended by the government because they couldn’t intervene effectively after the earthquake,” said Beran, a 40-year-old furniture maker who now lives with his wife Sevsem and two children In a tent city near their old home.

He also said he was offended that the opposition had “done nothing but propagandize against the government”.

Sevsem Baran and Ferdi Baran sit in a tent in a tent city in Turkey’s Hatay province.Neyran Elden/NBC News

But he said Erdogan and his ruling AK Party might be able to repair and rebuild quake-hit areas faster than the ruling coalition.

Outside of Türkiye, the outcome will be watched. The opposition coalition has said it will seek to rebuild relations with the US, EU and NATO. Erdogan’s government blocked Sweden from joining NATO, so if he loses, the veto could end.

Domestically, Erdogan is likely to gain support from Turkey’s Syrian population, which at 3.7 million is the largest refugee community in the world.

The popularity of Syrian refugees fleeing the country’s civil war — now in its 12th year — has revived calls for Syrian refugees to return to their homes amid a shortage of housing and shelter following the earthquake.

Both presidential candidates running against Erdogan have pledged to send them back. Organ, who is backed by anti-immigration parties, said he would “use force if necessary”, while Kilidaroglu said he would deport them on a voluntary basis.

Erdogan has made little mention of immigration during his campaign. But his government has been looking for ways to resettle Syrians in the face of a wave of backlash against refugees.

Nasir Mohammad said he “didn’t want to think about what would happen” if Erdogan lost because some still considered him a Syrian refugee despite his Turkish citizenship six years ago.

“My Turkish neighbors told me that if Erdogan loses the election, I have to pack my bags and get ready to leave,” Mohammad, 51, said Thursday at the barbershop he started in the southern city of Mersin.

Marwan al-Hassan, who opened a car dealership in Istanbul after Hatay’s home and business were destroyed by the earthquake, said he could not return to Syria “because my life and that of my children were at risk there.” Hatay, 45, San said that if he went back, President Bashar al-Assad’s regime would kill him. He said if the situation got worse, he would try to go to Europe.

For Karabekir Akkoyunlu, a lecturer in Middle East politics at SOAS, University of London, Turkey’s economy, whose inflation rate soared to more than 85 percent last year, “has seen Erdogan face a challenge in opinion polls despite a “nationalist, anti-immigration wave running high across the board.” most important cause of potential failure.”

“Turkey has been in an economic crisis since 2018,” he said, adding that inflation “has hit households across the board.”

Most of Erdogan’s supporters, he said, “seem to believe that his government is not responsible for tens of thousands of lives lost. They accuse smaller players, such as contractors, of ignoring a political system that enables widespread corruption and nepotism.”

However, he added, “the real impact on opinion polls also depends on whether earthquake survivors are able to vote, as many of them have been displaced.”

According to Turkey’s Supreme Election Commission, only 133,000 people across the country re-registered with new addresses outside their homes. The International Organization for Migration said in March that nearly 3 million people were displaced after the quake.

That means many will have to travel to vote, like businessman Ali Catal, 51, and his family, who will make the 650-mile journey from Izmir to their former home in Hatay vote.

“These elections are very important to us, not just to us, but to everyone who lives in this country,” he said.

Neyran Elden reported from Istanbul, and Ammar Cheikh Omar from Mersin.

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