REPORT: International monitors deliver scathing verdict on Turkish referendum

A group of international monitors has already concluded that yesterday’s referendum in Turkey “fell short of international standards” as they deliver a scathing report on it:

CNN – International election monitors have delivered a scathing verdict on the conduct of Turkey’s controversial referendum to grant expansive new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Representatives from a coalition of international bodies said the referendum took place on an “unlevel playing field” with the “yes” campaign dominating media coverage. Voters were not provided with adequate information, opposition voices were muzzled and the rules were changed at the last minute, they said.

“The legal framework remained inadequate for the holding of a genuinely democratic referendum,” the monitors’ initial report stated.
The monitors — a partnership of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the Council for Europe — will deliver their final report in eight weeks.

Opposition groups have vowed to challenge the outcome, as results indicated the narrowest of victories for the “yes” campaign.

Despite a state of emergency and a widespread crackdown on dissent, Erdogan succeeded in persuading only 51.4% of voters to back his constitutional upheaval.

The three biggest cities in Turkey — Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir — rejected the plans, which would abolish Turkey’s system of parliamentary democracy and replace it with an executive presidency with sweeping, largely unchecked powers.

Here’s more, specifically on the allowance of unsealed ballots:

Tana de Zuleta of the OSCE said Monday that a Turkish electoral board decision to allow as valid ballots that did not bear official stamps undermined important safeguards against fraud.

The monitoring group described a series of irregularities in the referendum, including a skewed pre-vote campaign in favor of the “yes” vote, intimidation of the “no” campaign and the fact that the referendum question was not listed on the ballot.

De Zuleta of the OSCE said the procedures “fell short of full adherence” to the standards Turkey has signed up for.

While the international community and even the opposition in Turkey may cry for justice here, it simply won’t happen. Erdogan has already purged and replaced everyone in the judiciary, so that the very judges who will rule on this are already Erdogan supporters.

And if one judge happened to fall through the cracks and rules in favor of the opposition, that fraud was committed by Erdogan, you can be assured that the Supreme judicial body will have that person purged in a matter of hours.

In other words it’s a fixed system, especially after the purge, and Erdogan has won by deception — which may fulfill a prophecy in Daniel 11…

And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue.

Intrigue means ‘cheating’ in this context.

As a result of yesterday’s referendum, the required age for parliament has been dropped from 25 to 18. Like all good dictators, he wants to enlist the younger minds full of idealism and zeal for him.

He will also now be able to dissolve parliament if for some reason it gets in his way.

The first presidential election under this new constitution won’t be held until 2019, which will begin his first five-year term.

The next few years will be very interesting now that Erdogan has the ultimate power he seeks. I’m not sure exactly what he’ll do, but as I’ve pointed out before, Erdogan wants his resurrection of the Ottoman Empire to become official by 2023. And it looks like we are now well underway.

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