On May 14, Turks cast votes in the country’s presidential and parliamentary elections. As incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and opposition candidate Kemal Kılıcdaroglu failed to win 50% of ballots, a runoff is set to be held on May 28. More than 64M people, including 3.4M citizens overseas, are eligible to go to the polls to elect the next president.
The May 14 elections were the sixth time that Turks living abroad have been able to cast their vote. Although expatriate ballots do not significantly alter election outcomes, they tell a lot about what Turkish citizens residing abroad think about their country’s politics. The results of the recent polls indicate a clear variation in the voting tendencies of expats living in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states, as their voting preferences were divided between the ruling People’s Alliance and the opposition Nation Alliance.
Transnational political behavior is complex, including differing interest in politics and partisan preferences. The diversity of the Turkish diaspora and the variations in its voting preferences indicate that it not possible to speak of a monolithic and unified community. Though small in numbers compared to...
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