18-02-2020 08:14 PM Jerusalem Timing

Erdogan’s Party Wins Third Term in Turkish Elections

Erdogan’s Party Wins Third Term in Turkish Elections

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s party, Justice and Development (AKP), secured on Sunday a third term in office, winning about 326 seats in the Parliament.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s party, Justice and Development (AKP), secured on Sunday a third term in office, winning about 326 seats in the Parliament.


However, the party fell short of the 367-seat majority (two-third) needed to make unilateral constitutional changes. The party will not be able now to make constitutional changes without putting it to a public referendum.


Erdogan said he would build consensus with rivals, as he pledged “humility”.
"People gave us a message to build the new constitution through consensus and negotiation," he said in a victory speech as he addressed celebrating crowds outside the party's headquarters in Ankara."We will be seeking consensus with the main opposition, the opposition, parties outside of parliament, the media, NGOs, with academics, with anyone who has something to say."


 Erdogan added that he would write a "civilian, free constitution which embraces all parties of the society together".
"We will discuss the new constitution with opposition parties. This new constitution will meet peace and justice demands”.
Erdogan also said a new constitution, replacing one introduced under martial law in 1982, was needed to make Turkey more democratic and to enhance individual freedoms.


Opponents say the AKP wants to write the constitution to consolidate its grip on power, and said Erdogan wants to introduce a system with more executive powers for the president.


"Believe me, Sarajevo won today as much as Istanbul, Beirut won as much as Izmir, Damascus won as much as Ankara, Ramallah, Nablus, Jenin, the West Bank, Jerusalem won as much as Diyarbakir", Erdogan said. 


More than 50 million people, about two-thirds of Turkey's population of 73 million, were eligible to vote in Sunday's election. NTV television said turnout was 84.5%.


OPPOSITION SHARE
The main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) secured 25.9 per cent, while the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) got 13 per cent.

Independent candidates, representing the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) in the Kurdish-majority southeast, polled 5.9 per cent of votes.


Under Turkey's electoral system, a party must gain at least 10 per cent of the national vote to win seats in the National Assembly.
Final results indicated that the AKP would have 326 seats in the new parliament, the CHP 135, the MHP 53, and independents 36.