Turkey’s ruling AK Party (AKP) suffered a major blow as it failed to secure a majority in the parliamentary polls.
With 98 per cent of the votes counted, AKP only managed 259 of the 550 seats.
After holding an emergency cabinet meet, the government announced its plans to form a coalition government. But Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus didn’t rule out the possibility of an early election.
“I believe that the President will give the duty of forming the government to the leader of AK Party, the party which came first, as part of democratic custom. I believe our Prime Minister will be able to form the government within the mandatory time that will satisfy everyone,” Kurtulmus said.
Surprisingly the opposition pro-Kurdish party, crossed the 10% seat threshold in the Turkish Parliament for the first time.
“It is a big step for Kurdish people to surpass the threshold. Our party will have the political power and they will be able to use that power when necessary,”said a pro-Kurdish supporter Adem Kayran.
According to the Constitution, the President can call for an early election if a government is not formed within 45 days
“It is important that democracy has been improved in a multi-party system one way or another in the past five years. That is one of the best results of yesterday’s election. Turkey has a mature democracy. Therefore a coalition will definitely come out of this maturity. (There is) the merest chance (of an) early election,” Deputy PM Kurtulmus said.
The result comes as a blow to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s plans to boost his office’s powers. His party failed to get a majority for the first time in 13 years.
President Erdogan first came to power as prime minister in 2003, was seeking a two-thirds majority to turn Turkey into a presidential republic, that is, transfer power from the Prime Minister’s Office into his hands and make changes to the Constitution without a referendum.