Today: Saturday, 25 May 2024 year

President Erdogan calls early Turkish elections in bid to solidify power

President Erdogan calls early Turkish elections in bid to solidify power

President Erdogan’s announcement of the snap elections comes amid growing warnings about vulnerabilities in the economy, Turkish news agency Anadolu reported.

Turkish President surprised many experts by calling the elections so soon, as well as while Turkey remains under a state of emergency (SoE) since a failed coup in July 2016. Thus, the current call gives the police added powers, restricts the right of assembly and is likely to constrain campaigning.

Turkey’s economy expanded by 7.4 percent last year, the growth was fuelled by government incentives that economists say have led to economic imbalances, including a widening current account deficit and persistent double-digit inflation.

Erdogan’s move allows the leader — criticized for president’s authoritarian tendencies — to capitalize on nationalist sentiment that is running high following a successful military campaign to drive out Syrian Kurdish militants from the border enclave of Afrin in northeast Syria and ahead of warnings that the economy could be foundering.

It also puts opposition parties, many of which haven’t yet decided who to put forward to challenge Erdogan, at a distinct disadvantage.

“Although its seems there are no serious issues arising as the president and the government are working in harmony, the diseases of the old system can confront us at every step,”

Erdogan said in a speech broadcast live on television, he added that Turkey needs to make decisions about the future more strongly and apply them, passing to the “new governmental system becomes urgent”.

On April, 18, the Turkish Parliament approved a request from prime minister Binali Yildirim to extend the state of emergency, which has been in force since the failed coup. According to recent Parliament’s approval, the SoE is ale for another three months.