Erdogan assumes greater powers as Turkey's new era begins

Sergei Bobylev  TASS

Sergei Bobylev TASS

"As president, I swear upon my honour and integrity, before the great Turkish nation and history, to work with all my power to protect and exalt the glory and honour of the Republic of Turkey", Erdogan told parliament as he took the oath of office.

But his opponents fear that his new role as executive president will destroy Turkish democracy.

Erdogan will face immediate and major challenges in his second term, posed by an imbalanced if fast-growing economy and foreign policy tensions between the West and Turkey, a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member.

On the eve of Monday's inauguration authorities dismissed more than 18,000 state employees - majority from the police and army - in what the government said would be the final decree under emergency rule imposed following a failed 2016 coup.

Observers had speculated that the purge might ease after the elections, but on Sunday the government issued a decree dismissing 18,000 state employees including teachers, police and military officers over alleged links to terrorist groups.

After the summit in Brussels, Trump was to stay for three days in the United Kingdom - where massive protests were expected.

The changes are the result of a bitterly fought referendum in 2017, where Mr Erdogan campaigned for a Yes vote and won narrowly amid allegations of vote rigging.

But with the clock wound back under the new system, the changes would mean that Erdogan could stay in power for another two terms until 2028.

Turkey's army may come under the authority of the defence ministry.

The appointment of former chief of the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces Hulusi Akar to the post of Turkey's defense minister can be considered the first hint that Ankara doesn't intend to reckon with the NATO demand, since according to NATO standards, defense minister of a NATO member state should be a civilian.

The new Cabinet, due to be announced at 1830GMT, is expected to have a different look, with pro-government Hurriyet daily columnist Abdulkadir Selvi saying that it was set to "surprise" with figures from outside the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Meanwhile, President Erdogan hosted a dinner in honour of the delegations taking part in the inauguration ceremony, which was attended by Dr. Al Sunaidy.

"Today we are making a new start", Erdogan said at the ceremony.

The most intense attention will focus on who will be responsible for foreign policy and the economy.

Meanwhile Mevlut Cavusoglu remains in his post as foreign minister.

The country's incumbent leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan won the presidential race in the first round having garnered 52.59% of the vote. His closest rival, Muharrem Ince of the main opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, gained 30.64 percent, while the imprisoned, pro-Kurdish candidate, Selahattin Demirtas, garnered 8.40 percent, the council confirmed.

Notícias recomendadas

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.