Erdoğan, Bahçeli again discuss possible alliance for local elections

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Nationalist MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. AFP PHOTOS

President and chairman of ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a meeting on Wednesday with Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli reportedly seeking a possible alliance in upcoming local elections scheduled for March.

Neither party issued a statement on the talks.

Their last meeting held to find a formula providing benefits to both parties was on Oct. 16.

The leaders announced on Oct. 23 that there would be no alliance for the local elections.

“As of today, no intention, no seeking and no expectation for any election alliance for the March 31, 2019 local elections is left for the MHP,” Bahçeli said during his party group meeting in parliament on Oct. 23.

An hour after Bahçeli spoke, Erdoğan confirmed that the parties would not form an alliance in the local elections. “If they say they will go their way in the local elections, then we say that everybody will go its own way,” he said.

They had a sparred over a general amnesty bill submitted to parliament by the MHP foreseeing a five-year reduction in sentence for perpetrators of certain crimes.

The two parties formed an alliance for the parliamentary and presidential elections on June 24, gifting Erdoğan an easy win in his presidential bid.

According to the Turkish media, Bahçeli secured high-level public service positions for his supporters in return.

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