On Sunday, local elections were held in the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus.
In April 2010, Derviş Eroğlu of the National Unity Party (Ulusal Birlik Partisi) – UBP) party was elected president. The UBP already had a parliamentary majority too.
At the local elections, the UBP has again emerged as the main winner. The TRNC media website is reporting that the UBP has won 12 of the 28 municipalities. The opposition Republican Turkish Party (Cumhuriyetçi Türk Partisi – CTP) won 8 municipalities and the Democratic Party (Demokrat Parti – DP) won five. Independents won the remaining three. Turnout was 79.5% of the 164,486 registered voters.
The vote share is not yet available, but the results confirm the general shift to the nationalist UBP party.
Yesterday the presidential election was held in the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus. The constitution is available here.
The two main candidates were the incumbent president, Mehmet Ali Talat of the CTP party, and incumbent prime minister, Derviş Eroğlu of the UBP party.
CTP = Republican Turkish Party (Cumhuriyetçi Türk Partisi)
UBP = National Unity Party (Ulusal Birlik Partisi)
The official media network has announced the following result:
Derviş Eroğlu (UBP), 50.38%
Mehmet Ali Talat (CTP – independent), 42.85%
Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu (independent), 3.81%
Zeki Beşiktepeli (independent), 1.61%
Mustafa Kemal Tümkan (independent), 0.79%
Arif Salih Kirdag (independent), 0.43%
Ayhan Kaymak (independent), 0.14%
Given Derviş Eroğlu has won more than 50% of the vote, he is elected.
This result will end a period of cohabitation as the UBP party has 26 seats in the 50-seat parliament. The UBP won last year’s parliamentary election. (See previous post).
Eroğlu’s election is noteworthy because he is portrayed as a hardline nationalist in the Cyprus/TRNC conflict. President Talat was campaigning on a promise that he would deliver a deal with Cyprus in the conflict. However, Eroğlu apparently rejects any such deal.
Updated 6 May 2010
As noted above, the period of cohabitation ended with the election of President Eroğlu, who appointed Hüseyin Özgürgün of the UBP as prime minister on 23 April.
As expected, the results of the recent election in the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus has led to a period of cohabitation.
At the election, the Party of National Unity (UBP) won 26 of the 52 seats in the parliament. The Republican Turkish Party (CTP) won 15 seats, the Democratic Party (DP) 5 seats, the Communal Democracy Party (TKP) 2 seats, and the Freedom and Reform Party (ORP) 2 seats. The President, Mehmet Ali Talat, is from the CTP. The UBP and the CTP have divergent policy preferences on the issue of the future of Northern Cyprus.
Last week the new parliament convened and earlier this week Derviş Eroğlu’s new UBP government was approved by President Talat. South East European Times reports that there are 11 ministers and gives the names of the most senior ones.
Prime Minister Eroğlu was head of government previously from 9.7.1985-1.1.1994 and from 1.8.1996-13.1.2004.
There is an interesting, though somewhat dated, article on party politics in Northern Cyprus available here. There is also a really informative article in South East European Society and Politics, vol. 9, no. 3, 2004, pp. 122-36, as well as a further election report in the same journal vol. 10, no. 3, 2005, pp. 465-75.
As discussed in a previous post, the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus has a semi-presidential constitution. The constitution is available here.
On Sunday early legislative elections were held. The term is five years. The last elections were held in February 2005.
There is a 50-seat parliament. TRNC Info reports that the Party of National Unity (UBP) has won 44%. The following seat share is reported: UBP 26 seats, Republican Turkish Party (CTP) 15 seats, Democratic Party (DP) 5 seats, Communal Democracy Party (TKP) 2 seats, and, a new party, the Freedom and Reform Party (ORP) 2 seats.
The President, Mehmet Ali Talat, is from the CTP. So, with an absolute majority for the UBP, this could lead to a period of cohabitation. Previously, or since September 2006 anyway, the government was a CTP/ORP coalition. Given the UBP favours closer ties with Turkey, whereas the CTP proposes the unification of the island, any such cohabitation could be problematic.
Another disputed area that has a semi-presidential constitution is the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus. The constitution of the Turkish Cypriot State dates back to 1985 and is available here. The Turkish Republic of North Cyprus was proclaimed in 1983. So, this is the first constitution of the self-proclaimed state.
The president is directly elected (Art 105). The last presidential election was held in April 2005 and was won by Mehmet Ali Talat. The president serves for a five-year term. President Talat represent the Republican Turkish Party (CTP).
The constitution establishes a prime minister (Art. 112), whose cabinet needs the confidence of the Assembly to be formed (Art 115). The Assembly may table a vote of no-confidence during the legislative term. If the government loses the confidence vote, then it has to resign.
As I understand it, there have been a couple of periods of a divided executive in the area (meaning that the president and PM are from different parties, but the president’s party is represented in government), but no periods of cohabitation (where the president’s party is not represented in government). If I am mistaken, then please let me know.
Previous posts in this series:
Palestinian National Authority