US State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki, during the daily press briefing on Monday, preferred not to characterize Turkey's recent local elections as 'fair, free and transparent."
When asked whether Turkey's local elections can be characterized as 'fair, free and transparent,' Psaki said, she has "no particular analysis."
This is highly unusual. One thing that neither the president Obama nor any other US officials called Prime Minister Erdogan to congratulate for his recent success. Though, for US not to characterize the Turkey's elections 'fair, free and transparent' is pretty significant deal.
After the daily press briefing, I had a chance to talk about this particular subject with a senior State department official. Here are my quick questions and answers with the senior official:
I'm puzzled that you can't qualify Turkey's recent local elections as 'free, fair and transparent'?
Often times there are irregularities that reported. We let the process sees itself through. This happens in many countries. We will keep talking about it though.
So, because of these irregularities you can't characterize Turkey@s elections as fair and transparent?
Not for us to judge. But often times, governments will look into them themselves (these irregularities) as we understand this is the case in Turkey.