Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday interrupted a live television interview, before returning to apologize for the stomach flu.
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The 69-year-old leader made three campaign speeches on Tuesday, ahead of presidential and legislative elections that promise to be very tough on May 14.
He was scheduled to end the evening live with a joint interview with Ulke TV and Kanal 7.
His television appearance began more than 90 minutes late, and was then cut short in the middle of a question 10 minutes into the interview.
The camera was panning and the reporter who asked the question rose from his chair when the broadcast cut off. “Oh my God,” said an anonymous voice from behind the camera.
Erdogan returned 15 minutes later, apologizing for his illness.
“Yesterday and today there was a lot of work. I got the stomach flu because of it.” “At one point I wondered if it would have been a bad idea if we canceled the show. But we promised. I ask your and your audience’s forgiveness.”
His face looked tired and his eyes watered as he spoke. The Turkish leader then answered a few more questions before the show ended.
Erdogan and his conservative party, the Justice and Development Party, have dominated Turkish politics for 20 years. But the current election campaign is one of the biggest challenges for the outgoing president. Polls gave him either neck and neck or beaten by Kemal Kilicdaroglu.
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