Erdogan rival accuses government in Turkey of blocking text message

2 weeks ago 35

ISTANBUL - Turkey’s opposition leader on Friday accused President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government of blocking his text messages to voters ahead of this weekend’s historic election runoff.

Mr Kemal Kilicdaroglu accused Turkey’s BTK information and telecommunication technologies authority of acting on Mr Erdogan’s orders in order to hurt his campaign.

“They banned (them) because they are afraid of us,” the secular opposition leader said in a late-night television interview.

“I’ve been left in total darkness,” he separately added on Twitter.

“I’m asking you, Erdogan, do you not want me to run in the elections?“

Mr Kilicdaroglu’s campaign team said it had earlier sent out a mass text inviting people to tune in to the opposition leader’s television interview.

BTK issued no immediate comment.

Mr Kilicdaroglu claims came in the final stretch of an increasingly bitter battle for the Turkish presidency.

Mr Erdogan fell just short of securing outright victory on May 14 but is entering Sunday’s runoff as a firm favourite to extend his two-decade rule until 2028.

Opinion polls show Mr Kilicdaroglu struggling to make up the five-point deficit he suffered in the first round.

The two rivals have been campaigning round the clock in what is widely viewed as Turkey’s most important election in generations.

Mr Erdogan appeared in his own national television interview earlier in the day that lasted more than an hour. AFP

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