World Bulletin / News Desk
Ahead of the Turkish local elections which took place on March 30, many media sources in the Arab world were speculating that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling AK Party was going to loose. However, many were surprised to see the AK Party once again emerge as the most popular party.
Qatar-based Egyptian scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi was once of the first to congratulate Erdogan on his victory, sending him a letter telling him that he performed a prostration of thankfulness on learning that AK Party had won the elections.
The popular Arabic newspaper Sharq al Aswad the next day ran the headline 'Erdogan's Ottoman Slap to his Opponents', while the Al-Hayat newspaper described the outcome as an 'Easy Victory' for Erdogan. However, many semi-official semi-private newspapers in Egypt like Shuruk went silent, reporting nothing on the election results. Meanwhile, Al-Ahram's headline said 'Erdogan wins but...'
On Tuesday, Al-Ahram continued on from where it left off, saying 'Erdogan won to get revenge,' followed by the sub-heading 'The opposition party accuses of fraud and fears for division of country.' In the same report, the paper gave the heading quoting Turkish president Abdullah Gul, saying 'Egypt and Turkey are the balancing states of the region.'
On the same day Shuruk newspaper devoted its tenth page to the election results with the heading 'Erdogan Celebrates Victory and Makes Threats', adding that the AK Party had strengthened its grip on the country's municipalities, including the hometown of rival Fethullah Gulen, Erzurum. It also asked what the Turkish opposition was going to do now.
Carrying on from where it left off, Sharq al Aswad stated that Erdogan had vowed to punish his opponents. Similarly, Al-Hayat newspaper showed Erdogan making the 'Rabia' sign and threatening rival Fethullah Gulen, who he accuses of setting up a 'state within a state'.
In general, Egyptian media avoided the topic the day after the election but used very critical language on Tuesday, and of course this had a great influence of information sharing across the Arab world. It is feared that Erdogan's success in Turkey could have a negative effect of military general Abdal-Fattah al-Sisi's election campaign for presidency in Egypt as Erdogan has never stopped criticizing him, accusing him of committing a coup to oust former president Mohamed Morsi on July 3.Last Mod: 02 Nisan 2014, 17:41