Ruling party wins third term
Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AK) has won a third term following a general election yesterday (Sunday). The party improved its percentage of the vote slightly but its majority was reduced from 341 in 2007 to 326 today. That leaves them well short of the numbers they needed to make constitutional changes without opposition support.
With 99.6% of the votes counted, the AK Party of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was on 49.89% (up 4%) with 327 seats.
The Republican People’s Party of Kemal Kiliçdaroğlu came second with 25.91% (up 5%) and 135 seats (in 2007 they had 112 seats).
Third was the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) of Devlet Bahçeli who took 12.99% of the vote. They had been expected to fall below the 10% threshold following a series of scandals and were reduced in their number of seats from 71 seats in 2007 to 53 seats today.
The Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) had supported a number of independents and their vote came in at around 6.66% with an increase of ten seats from 26 seats in 2007 to 36 seats today.
Whilst the result is a resounding victory for the AK Party and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, they will not be able to make the constitutional changes they had hoped for without the support of the opposition parties. The two main opposition parties had said during the campaign that they were willing to see constitutional change but not all of those demanded by the AK Party.