An email sent to the İstanbul Police Department earlier this week by an unidentified person that claimed that Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli would be assassinated during an election rally in Burdur mobilized police departments in southern Turkey.
The MHP leader held his Burdur rally on May 22 under heightened security. A huge number of police officers were sent to Burdur from nearby provinces to protect Bahçeli. The rally was held without any incident.
The email was sent to the İstanbul Police Department on the evening of May 21. According to the email, armed assailants were planning to shoot down Bahçeli during his address to MHP voters in Burdur. The police department immediately informed the Interior Ministry about the email. The ministry mobilized all police departments in southern Turkey, asking them to step up measures against any act of terror or violence.
On the day of the rally, the Burdur Police Department -- assisted by a huge number of police officers from other provinces -- increased security measures around the square where Bahçeli addressed his supporters. Bahçeli's bodyguards were also cautioned by the police department to be more careful with regard to any possible attack on the MHP leader. The Interior Ministry in addition asked police departments across Turkey to be watchful against any possible attack on political leaders prior to the June 12 general elections.