Turkish citizens to vote from abroad

Turks living abroad will be able to vote in Turkish elections for the first time, says Turkish deputy PM.

Turkish citizens to vote from abroad
World Bulletin / News Desk 
Turkish citizens living abroad will be able to vote for the Turkish elections for the first time, Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister, Bulent Arinc, said in a press conference in Serbia’s capital Belgrade.

Speaking to workers in the Turkish embassy, “This has finally become reality after years of embarrassment,“ Arinc said, emphasizing that Turkey’s citizens living abroad should have been able to vote in the Turkish elections a long time ago.

Arinc said the Turkish government had tried years ago to propose a bill that would allow citizens living abroad to vote, but that the Turkish Constitutional Court had opposed the plan.

Turkey’s step to allow citizens abroad to vote is part of its plan to change the Turkish Constitution, which has experienced no major change since it was written in 1981.

Arinc said one of the reasons why Turkey-Serbia relations have advanced over the years was that the governments of Serbia and Turkey have strong political ties.

Turkey and Serbia had a common culture and history, as they were both part of the Ottoman Empire, Arinc noted.

Emphasizing the strategic importance of Northern Cyprus, Arinc announced the project to build an underwater pipeline, connecting Turkey and Northern Cyprus, to ease the Turkish Cypriot water shortage problem.

The plans to build an underwater pipeline come after the recent opening at the end of October of Turkey’s first underwater subway, Marmaray, which connects the Asian and European side of Istanbul.

Arinc, who is the minister responsible for overseeing state-owned media organizations, said Turkey’s official broadcaster TRT is now broadcasting 15 channels in eight different languages.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 08 Kasım 2013, 14:01