Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has officially announced that he will stand again in next year’s presidential elections. “Let me say it here. Tayyip Erdogan is the People’s Alliance candidate,” Erdogan said at a rally in Izmir on Thursday, referring to the alliance between his AKP party and the right-wing conservative MHP.
Erdogan rejected rumors that he was aiming for an early election. The presidential election is scheduled to take place on June 24, 2023, he said.
It is still unclear which challenger Erdogan will face. The opposition CHP party has not yet nominated its top candidate. Erdogan called on CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu on Thursday to get down to business: “Announce either your candidate or your candidacy,” he demanded.
Turkey is currently in a severe economic crisis, inflation is at 73.5 percent, the highest it has been since 1998, and the Turkish lira has fallen in value. Critics blame Erdogan’s unconventional economic policy for the problems. Despite rampant inflation in the country, the Turkish central bank recently left the key interest rate unchanged again. Erdogan is a declared opponent of high interest rates, which, according to prevailing opinion, are an effective means of fighting inflation.