Turkey’s Nation Alliance, a coalition of six opposition parties in Turkey, presented their joint manifesto ahead of the upcoming presidential elections expected to take place on May 14. Pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) said the manifesto did not promise the fundamental changes required to address the Kurdish Question.
Containing over 2,000 targets, the bloc’s 240-page manifesto presents post-election modifications in economics, foreign policy, science, education and social policy.
The Nation Alliance began by commenting that Turkey’s presidential system, invented by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in 2017, is responsible for the deepest crisis in governance and economics since the establishment of the Republic.
“Our primary goal is to make Turkey a welfare country where everyone has a life worthy of human dignity, and reaches social welfare standards, where women, children, youth and all citizens have a future with hope, and where social peace and tranquility are established,” said the bloc.
The Nation bloc aims to make changes in the areas of the legal and judicial system; public administration; anti-corruption; transparency and audit; economy, finance and employment; science, research and development; innovation; entrepreneurship and digital transformation; sectoral policies; education; social policies; foreign policy; defence, security, and migration.
The parliamentary group deputy chair of the pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), Meral Danış Beştaş, criticised the Alliance’s proposals.
Beştaş said that the manifesto sets out restorative features, rather than offering solutions that could bring about fundamental change, and added that the proposals will not fully address the Kurdish Question.
“I could only check the primary notes. It seems like a restoration project… We will change this and this, they say. Rather than bringing fundamental changes, the program aims to repair the injustice, unlawfulness, non-democracy, non-constitution created by the AKP,” Beştaş said.
“We have the opinion that more serious work should be fulfiled on fundamental issues, the Kurdish issue. They aim to restore the system, but I think there are deficiencies in terms of a structural solution,” she said.
Beştaş also said that each government tries to use the Kurdish Question to consolidate power but does not provide any real solutions.
With the pro-Kurdish HDP excluded from the bloc, the six parties have been negotiating how to remove incumbent President Erdoğan from power. However, the alliance has not yet announced a joint candidate to run against Erdoğan.