A polling station official and an election observer from an opposition party were shot dead in the eastern province of Malatya’s Pütürge district on Sunday during local elections, according to the Hürriyet Daily News.
The state-run Anadolu news agency reported that the deaths followed an altercation between supporters of competing candidates in an election for neighborhood administrator.
Felicity Party (SP) leader Temel Karamollaoğlu said on Twitter that the two people killed were members of his party.
“As a result of an attack by the nephew of the AKP [ruling Justice and Development Party] candidate in Pütürge, one ballot box observer and one polling clerk of our party have lost their lives. This incident was not a simple dispute; there was an attempt to make people cast their votes without the privacy of voting booths, and our observers objecting to this situation were massacred,” Karamollaoğlu said.
Authorities have taken security measures around the school in which the polling station is located and in the neighborhood.
Speaking to reporters at the polling station where he cast his vote in İstanbul, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan expressed sadness over the incident in Malatya.
Malatya Governor Aydın Baruş announced that four people believed to be linked to the shooting had been detained.