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Social media platforms are ablaze as Turks say “enough” to President Erdogan

Thousands protest in Istanbul against corruption and Erdogan's government, December 2013. A banner with Fethullah Gulen and PM Erdogan's pictures reads “one is no better than the other”. Fulya Atalay for Demotix.

It took just a few hours for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to realise the mistake he made while speaking to the members of his party in Ankara on May 8.

Referring to himself first in the third person, President Erodgan said: “his foes have just one care – to destroy Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.”

He continued: “If one day our nation says ‘tamam’, then we will move to the side”.

In Turkish, “tamam” means “that's enough”. And that is exactly what Turks said in response to the president's pledge.

In tandem with Erdogan's outspoken political opponents, many members of the public at large took to Twitter to say “enough”. On May 8 and 9, #Tamam trended worldwide and across Turkey.

In retaliation, the hashtag “#Devam” meaning “continue” or “carry on” also started gaining influence. But the comparison of the two is nowhere near close.

Akin Unver, who is a Fellow of Cyber Research Program at the Centre for Economic and Foreign Policy Research tracked both hashtags and shared this:

We are certain. This is our final decision [The block below says: Are you sure you want to exit? Ok or Cancel

Others have called to remove Turkey's emergency rule — which Erdogan used as justification for early elections, currently scheduled for June 24 — in order to have free and fair elections in Turkey.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales used the hashtag as an opportunity to call on Erdogan to lift the ban on Wikipedia, which has been blocked for a year in Turkey.

#Tamam also made it to Instagram:

#TAMAM

A post shared by KIMAÇ ÇABUKER (@kimaccabuker) on

Authorities were quick to dismiss the rising support for “tamam” online and claimed posts were sent by bots associated with PKK and FETO.

AKP spokesman Mahir Unal said:

Most of the tweets with the hashtag TAMAM are posted from countries where FETÖ and PKK are active. They are bot accounts. We can understand Greece. But what about those at home?’

Presidential spokesperson İbrahim Kalın in a press conference on May 9 was quoted saying:

The attacks via social media bots will not come up with any results. We consider reality, not the virtual world. We believe our nation will say ‘continue’ instead. It is not important for us. Citizens will have the last word in the polls. 

While Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu used #Devam to stress that Turkey's future lies with President Erdogan.

We have big hopes and big love! In our blessed struggle for prosperous and stronger Turkey #carryon

Image text: Turkey is our common living space, common love, common past, common future

President Erdogan has ruled Turkey for 15 years. He has also called for snap elections, which will take place on June 24. If he secures victory in these elections, Erdogan will stay in power for the next seven years.

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