|Intro||Former Turkish Minister of the Interior|
|Birth||8 July 1956|
Meral Akşener (born July 8, 1956) is a Turkish politician. She served as Minister of the Interior and was former a vice-speaker of the parliament. In 2016, she led a group of opposition within the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) against its leader Devlet Bahçeli.
Meral Akşener was born on July 8, 1956 to Tahir Ömer and his wife Sıddıka in Gündoğdu neighborhood of İzmit.
She was educated in History at Istanbul University. She made her post graduate studies at the Social Sciences Institute of Marmara University earning a Ph.D. degree. She then worked as a lecturer in the faculties of Yıldız Technical University, Kocaeli University and Marmara University before entering politics.
She entered politics with the general elections in 1995 as deputy of Istanbul Province from the Right Path Party (DYP). Akşener has been Minister of the Interior between November 8, 1996 and June 30, 1997 replacing Mehmet Ağar, who resigned as a result of his involvement in the Susurluk scandal.
Akşener was re-elected into the parliament in the 1995 general election as deputy of Kocaeli Province. Later she was re-elected into the parliament in the general elections 2007 and 2011 representing Istanbul Province as a member of Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).
She was elected vice-speaker of the parliament alongside Güldal Mumcu, another woman politician, as serving at this post after Nermin Neftçi, who was Turkey's first woman vice-speaker elected in 1968.