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Justice and Development Party won Turkey's parliamentary polls

Jun 9, 2015 15:41 IST

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) of Turkey led by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on 7 June 2015 won Turkey’s parliamentary polls.

According to preliminary results, AKP lost its single-party government and for the first time in 13 years, the party lost the majority in the 550-member Parliament.

On the other hand, the pro-Kurdish left-wing Peoples' Democracy Party (HDP) which crossed the 10 percent threshold entered the Parliament for the first time.

Percentage of votes (based on 99.9 percent of votes counted) won by different parties
• AKP: 41 percent (258 seats, which is 18 less than it requires for a majority)
• Republican People's Party (CHP): 25 percent (132 seats)
• Nationalist Movement Party (MHP): 16.5 percent (81 seats)
• People’s Democratic Party (HDP): 13 percent (79 seats)

Effect of the parliamentary polls result
The results speak of change in Turkey’s culture towards more inclusive society as highlighted by the win of pro-Kurdish HDP.

Further, the government in Turkey would now become more pluralist with AKP now not in majority there will be race for coalition.

But if no working coalition can be formed within 45 days, the Constitution empowers Erdogan to call an early parliamentary election. That election would have to be held 90 days later.

Comment
Erdogan who became the first directly elected President in 2014 after remaining as Prime Minister for three terms since 2003 was seeking a two-thirds majority to turn Turkey into a presidential republic. However, this win for AKP may not allow him to turn Turkey into a presidential republic.

On the other hand, the entry of pro-Kurdish HDP into the Parliament marks a significant departure from the one-party ruled government. It speaks for change in Turkey’s culture towards more inclusive society. For instance, the number of women in the 550-seat parliament will increase to 98 up from 79. All thanks to HDP which is the first party to introduce a quota of 50% female politicians.

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