Is it appropriate to grant voting rights to Turkish citizens residing in Europe for the elections in May?

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As the Turkish elections approach, Turkish nationals living abroad are planning to cast their votes. Millions of Turkish citizens live overseas, and around 5% of the total electorate is made up of these expatriates. Many Turkish citizens living abroad feel that they belong to Turkey and have a dream of returning there one day.

Those against extending voting rights to the Turkish diaspora are not critical of the right to vote but are more likely to be critical of the fact that the current AKP government made it possible. Critics of the right to vote abroad argue that Turkish migrants living in the West are well off and enjoy better living standards, but defenders say it’s a democratic right.

The question of whether expatriate Turks should have a say in deciding the fate of the country they don’t live in comes up at each election. They were given the right to vote in 2012, and Turkish nationals with residency abroad cast their first votes remotely in 2014 for the presidential elections.

Turkish nationals living abroad have the same rights as those living in Turkey, and they are allowed to use the same daily services, such as hospitals and post offices, as the people residing in Turkey. They also have some kind of investment in Turkey.

Prof Ayhan Kaya argues that people should have a say in the politics of both their country of origin and their country of residence. He suggests that external voting cannot be discussed without examining the policies of Turkey towards its nationals living abroad.

Emre Erdogan, a professor of political sciences at Bilgi University, suggests that the governing bodies should be inclusive when deciding who should vote. He says that people affected by the policies of governments or who affect policies directly should have a voice. He argues that there is no harm in being inclusive, and Turkish citizens living abroad should have a right to vote in Turkish elections.

SOURCE: Ref-euronews

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