Analysis 24 Jan 17

MPs Nudge Turkey Closer to ‘One-Man’ Rule

After MPs backed constitutional amendments radically extending the President’s powers, fears are growing that Recep Tayyip Erdogan could soon enjoy almost limitless control.

Ankara, Istanbul
Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party lawmakers applaud after Turkey's parliament approved a contentious constitutional reform package, paving the way for a referendum on a presidential system that would greatly expand the powers of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Photo: Burhan Ozbilici/AP

Turkey’s parliament on Saturday approved a set of constitutional amendments that will dramatically shift the country’s governance into an executive-presidential system, providing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with almost limitless powers.

The final word on the new system belongs to Turkish citizens, who will vote on it in a referendum scheduled for April or May.

Until then, Turkey is likely to see more protests, tension and political quarrels over the plan.

Opposition parties and a significant number intellectuals, independent experts and people in the media see it as a final step by Erdogan towards establishing complete control over the country.

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