The Democratic Party (Demokrat Parti) was a Turkish moderately right wing political party, and the country's third legal opposition party, after the Liberal Republican Party (Serbest Cumhuriyet Fırkası) established by Ali Fethi Okyar in 1930, and the National Development Party (Milli Kalkınma Partisi) established by Nuri Demirağ in 1945.
The Democratic Party was founded in 1946 to oppose the ruling Republican People's Party, which had established the Turkish Republic. Party leader Adnan Menderes became Prime Minister after the Democratic Party won the 1950 elections. The Democratic Party did not repudiate the Republican People's Party's policy of Westernization, but did not pursue it with quite the same vigour. It was also less militantly secular than the Republican People's Party. The Democratic Party was removed from government when General Cemal Gürsel staged a military coup, ousting Menderes as Prime Minister — the military feared that the founding principles of the Turkish Republic were being eroded, and there was growing public dissatisfaction with Menderes' perceived intolerance of criticism. Menderes was later executed. The party was suppressed on September 29 1961.
In November 1992, at what was declared to be the party's 5th Grand Conference, several former members relaunched the Democratic Party under the same name and emblem. It was at first led by Hayrettin Erkmen, but the most prominent leader was Aydın Menderes, son of Adnan, who was elected the party's third leader in February 1994. He led until a crippling road accident in 1996.