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POLITICS > Turkish President Gül says ‘no sweat’ over upcoming elections

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While declining to engage in yet another political debate, Gül said, “You know whether I sweat or not,” in apparent reference to his relatively more relaxed manner than PM Erdoğan. AA Photo

While declining to engage in yet another political debate, Gül said, “You know whether I sweat or not,” in apparent reference to his relatively more relaxed manner than PM Erdoğan. AA Photo

Although the occasion was quite non-political, President Abdullah Gül couldn’t escape questions about the August presidential elections, when Turks will directly elect their president for the first time.

“I suppose I haven’t sweated today,” Gül briefly said on April 11, in response to a reporter’s question, after completing the 1.7-kilometer ride in the presidential Çankaya Palace campus, on the occasion of the presentation of the 50th Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey.

The question referred to a recent statement by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who recently said that Turkey would have a “running and sweating president.”

While declining to engage in yet another political debate, Gül added, “You know whether I sweat or not,” in apparent reference to his relatively more relaxed manner than Erdoğan.

In remarks published by pro-government daily newspaper Sabah earlier this week, Erdoğan said Turkey’s first directly elected president would be a more powerful figure than the current largely ceremonial role, boosting expectations that he may run for the post in August.

“The president will be elected by the public for the first time, it’s important in this sense,” Erdoğan was quoted as saying. “The responsibilities will be different after these elections. It will not be a president of protocol, but one that sweats, runs around, works hard.”

April/11/2014

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