Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the inconclusive election result means no party can govern alone. His party, AKP, is meeting to try to form a government after losing its majority in a general election for the first time in 13 years. It secured 41%, a sharp drop from 2011, and must form a coalition or face entering a minority government. Mr Erdogan has called on all parties to “preserve the atmosphere of stability” in Turkey.
“I believe the results, which do not give the opportunity to any party to form a single-party government, will be assessed healthily and realistically by every party,” Mr Erdogan said. He said the high turnout – 86% – indicated Turkey’s “determination for democracy”. Turkey’s system of proportional representation means the AKP’s 41% of the vote will not give it a majority in parliament. It is now likely to try to form a coalition, but no party has yet indicated it is willing to join forces with it.
Opposition parties may yet try to form a coalition against the AKP. But Numan Kurtulmus, one of Turkey’s four deputy prime ministers, said there would be no government without representation by the AKP. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu is meeting AKP cabinet members and officials to assess the election results in Ankara. After the official final result is declared, he will have 45 days to form a government.
Mr Kurtulmus said another election was possible. The result is a blow to Mr Erdogan’s plans to boost his office’s powers. He had been seeking a two-thirds majority to turn Turkey into a presidential republic. The pro-Kurdish HDP crossed the 10% threshold, securing seats in parliament for the first time. “The discussion of executive presidency and dictatorship have come to an end in Turkey with these elections,” said HDP leader Selahattin Demirtas, BBC reports.