How “Kemalist” and “anti-Erdogan” Izmir is, proved this Sunday, at the big pre-election rally of the head of the opposition Kemal Kilicdaroglu.

More than 1 million people are estimated to have gathered on the city’s historic waterfront – a stronghold of Kemalism on the “red river of democracy”, as many opposition supporters have dubbed it.

“These are the elections where young people will show themselves. This election is for the reconstruction of democracy. This election is about building a beautiful Turkey, where no child will go to bed hungry. These elections will ensure equality between men and women. These elections are not elections of separation but of embrace, not of conflict but of reconciliation. This election is an election of embrace, not division. These elections are elections to bring democracy to Turkey,” said the president of the Republican People’s Party (CHP).

It is noted that all six leaders of the National Alliance spoke at the gathering, with the popular mayors of Istanbul, Ekrem Imamoglu and Ankara, Mansour Yavas being especially cheered.

Meral Aksener, the leader of the Good Party (IYI), sent a message of resistance against the “Erdogan occupation” of the city, which she said some call “Gyaurisa”because they don’t know history.

“They call Smyrna gyaurisa by those who do not know from history… You know, on the night of May 14, if we win, we will become conquerors. Smyrna, which put an end to the occupation (of the Greeks), Smyrna, which I see here today, has made its decision. Those who call Smyrna Giorisa also called the founders of the Republic drunkards,” said Aksener.