INTRODUCTION: On Sunday (5 June), the people of Turkey go to the polls to elect a new Government.
INTRODUCTION: On Sunday (5 June), the people of Turkey go to the polls to elect a new Government. According to local observers the hope is that one will emerge that can govern by itself, with the popular support necessary to bring to an end the factional violence that has left two hundred dead during the past two years.
SYNOPSIS: Electioneering throughout the country during the campaign has been intense. To rule in their own right the winning party has to obtain 226 of the country's 4???0 parliamentary seats. The rallies of the Opposition Leader, Mr Bulent Ecevit, have been gaining greater support as the elections grow nearer. But perhaps from already converted supporters, because on Thursday (2 June) an electioneering convoy of his in north eastern Turkey was reported to have come under gunfire. He wasn't injured but ten of his supporters were.
Following this incident, the Turkish election authorities have called for a ban on a rally that was to have been held on Friday (3 June) -- scheduled as the Opposition Republican People's party's climax to their campaign. The present Prime Minister, Mr Suleyman Demirel's Justice Party claimed the Opposition had not been given clear permission to use the venue -- Instanbul's Taksim Square -- for their meeting. Then, Mr Ecevit, said he'd received a warning from Mr Demirel that there would be an assassination attempt at the rally.
Observers have pointed out that under the law, the rally would have been the last that could be reported by the news media before Sunday's elections.