Op-Ed video: Why Europe is desperate to see Erdogan lose
As many in Europe pray for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's downfall, Turkish voters will need to make up their own minds up if they want to maintain the country's independence, argues David Hearst, the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Middle East Eye.
Despite the elections taking place in a free and fair setting, many in Europe want to see the back of the leader who has overseen ambitious infrastructure projects that have turned Turkey into a geopolitical powerhouse.
"There are many leading figure in the Middle East that are much less democratic than Erdogan and would not subject themselves to a free election," said Hearst.
"We all know what [Saudi Arabia]'s Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman did to Jamal Khashoggi. We know that 81 names have been added by Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the President if Egypt, to his terrorism bill. And they are the names of journalists and human rights defenders.
"Where is the uproar [in Europe] about this? Where is the front page coverage?," he added.
Erdogan won comfortably over the opposition's main candidate Kemal Kilicdaroglu in the first round, and is in a strong position to win a third term on 28 May.