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  • US delegation to visit Turkey today to discuss a proposal for the Kabul airport.
    • Defense Min Akar says Turkey will not send more troops to Afghanistan to secure the Kabul Airport with 500 already stationed there.
    • IYI party says it opposes Turkish deployment in Kabul, saying Turkish lives are at risk and the US must stabilize Afghanistan
  • Turkey may merge three Islamic banks controlled by the Wealth Fund to boost efficiency and economies of scale.
    • Ziraat, Vakif & Emlak have combined assets of TRY133.7bn & total 1Q21 profit of TRY114m (10% y/y increase).
    • The merger is currently in discussion phase and would create the second-largest Islamic bank in Turkey.
    • Additionally, Halkbank has held off on plans to set up its own Islamic bank
  • Veteran pollster warns HDP closure and outright ban on forming another pro-Kurdish party would cause at least a 5% loss in Kurdish votes for the AKP.
    • Notes 25% of the Kurdish population votes AKP, but the closure would likely divert support to the CHP.
    • Also says pressure from the MHP, not Erdogan, is the main driver of the HDP closure case – and the byproduct of the issue is nationalism in the IYI and CHP, which helps prevent an alliance between the opposition.