Turkey’s President Recept Tayyip Erdoğan cancelled his attendance at the campaign events for the nation’s May 14 election on Wednesday after falling ill in a live TV broadcast on Tuesday evening.
“I will rest at home with the advice of doctors,” President Erdoğan stated on Twitter, mentioning that he would be unable to attend the meetings at Kirikkale, Yozgat, and Sivas.
Instead, Vice President Fuat Oktay would be taking over his duties to lead the events in the three Turkish cities.
Kanal 7 and Ulke TV were hosting the live interview with journalist Hasan Ozturk and Erdoğan on Tuesday night when he cut the interview short due to a stomach illness. The program was interrupted for 20 minutes until Erdoğan rejoined the broadcast and established he had a “serious stomach flu.”
The program was originally planned to start at 10 p.m. However, it started an hour late and finished early. Although it wasn’t mentioned why the programme had an hour delay, Hurriyet Newspaper columnist Abdulkadir Selvi wrote that Professor Dr. Serkan Topaloglu told the President before going on air had a stomach flu.
According to the columnist, Topaloglu told the President that he was in favour of him not going on air, due to his health. However, President Erdogan told Dr Topaloglu promised Ulke TV’s editor-in-chief, Ozturk, that he would go on air.
Health Minister Fahrettin Koca stated that President Erdoğan had infectious gastroenteritis. Koca also mentioned that the president’s plans and programs will be rescheduled until his health improves.
While the president expanded on his health, the Directorate of Communication Fahrettin Altun denied the false information of Erdoğan alleged different health issues on Twitter.
“We categorically reject such baseless claims regarding President @RTErdogan’s health,” Altun tweeted. “No amount of disinformation can dispute the fact that the Turkish peoples stand with their leader and @RTErdrogan and his AK party are set to win the May 14 elections.”
The Republic People’s Party leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu shared a ‘get well soon’ message to the president,“I convey my best wishes to Mr. @RTEdogran.”
“I wish Mr. @RTErodgan get well soon and wish him a speedy recovery,” Good party leader Meral Aksener twitter.
On Thursday, the president was planning to attend the opening of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant in Mersin. President Erdogan was able to appear via a video uplink with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
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