Erdogan To Hold Referendum In Turkey For Right To Wear Hijab, Target Majority Vote Bank: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is preparing to hold a nationwide vote for the right of women to wear hijab in government institutions and educational institutions.

Controversies surrounding the wearing of the hijab have led to major political crises in Turkey for months. It is in this situation that the ruling party Erdogan’s AK Party is making such a move.

Erdogan, who has been in power in Turkey for the past two decades, was behind such a political move with the aim of holding the general elections in 2023. In 2013, Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party lifted the hijab ban on female officers in Turkey.

In 2002, Erdogan’s AK Party came to power in Turkey due to the hijab ban by secular parties in power in Turkey. Erdoğan’s plan is to repeat this strategy and keep the majority vote bank in his hands.

“If you dare, let’s put it to a referendum and let the people of the country make a decision,” Erdogan said, promoting the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP).

The Hijab Controversy in Turkey started with a comment from the country’s opposition party CHP about female judges wearing hijabs. CHP People’s Representative and former Turkish Culture Minister Fikri Sagral said that she finds it difficult to see female judges wearing hijab in court.

The controversy escalated when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan came with a strong response to the opinion of the opposition member. However, CHP Party Chairman Kemal Kilikdaroglu stated that the party member’s words are not the party’s position and the party does not pay attention to what women wear. But as the general election approached, the controversies started heating up again.

According to Turkish law, changes to the constitution require the support of 400 people without a referendum. But the ruling party, which does not have that much organizational strength, needs the support of the CHP to pass the amendment. Otherwise, the proposal can be put to the vote of the people with 360 votes. Erdogan’s move is to take advantage of this politically.

But the CHP has also deviated from its position on the hijab agreement. Kemal Kilicdaroglu is also moving to allay fears that his party will reinstate the headscarf ban if it comes to power in the next general election.

The CHP is also currently pushing for a constitutional right to guarantee the right to wear the headscarf. Middle Eye reports that Kemal Kilikdaroglu’s change of stance is aimed at the vote bank.

The CHP is the party founded by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the secular modern Turkish Republic. It was Ataturk who introduced the secularization of Turkey in the Turkish Constitution of 1924. Although Atatürk never banned the headscarf, he did not encourage its use in public. Due to his efforts, the hijab and burqa almost disappeared in Turkey.

The headscarf was at the center of debate in Turkey in the 1990s, but no party is proposing a ban today in Muslim-majority Turkey.


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