Bosnian Serb leaders back Erdogan in Turkish election

The separatist Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik has called on Turkish citizens to vote for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in next Sunday’s election, saying his persistence and patriotism have turned Turkey into ‘a progressive and modern country’.

Dodik, the president of Republika Srpska, one of Bosnia-Herzegovina’s two autonomous entities, threw his weight behind Erdoğan on Wednesday, becoming the second Western Balkan leader to do so, after Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama.

“President Erdoğan is a man of peace and dialogue, firmly in favour of the stabilisation of our region and the world,” Dodik said, according to Oslobodjenje.

“Thanks to his persistence, patriotism and decisiveness, Turkey is today a progressive and modern country,” he said, adding he was sure that Turkish citizens realise Erdoğan can secure long-term stability and prosperity.

Erdoğan, in power for two decades, hopes to extend his rule on Sunday but faces the toughest challenge to date, in the face of growing popular discontent caused by runaway inflation and plunging living standards.

Dodik, who is under US sanctions for undermining the stability and democracy in Bosnia-Herzegovina, visited Turkey in November 2021, in one of his rare forays abroad, and held talks with the Turkish president.

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