PM says remarks on Erdoğan’s role ‘distorted’

PM says remarks on Erdoğan’s role ‘distorted’

PM says remarks on Erdoğan’s role ‘distorted’

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Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has lashed out at the country’s media for “distorting” his June 2 statements on the responsibilities of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan since being elected in 2014, saying what he meant was that a politician inevitably starts carrying responsibilities after garnering the people’s votes.

“What I said there is as follows: Even though the constitution says ‘the president has no responsibility,’ there is a political responsibility now that people started to directly elect a president following a constitutional change,” Yıldırım said in a press conference at the Esenboğa Airport in Ankara, before departing for Azerbaijan early on June 3. 

“Because citizens want accountability from someone they vote for. This is the essence and core of politics,” Yıldırım added, saying the constitution needed to be amended in order to adapt to realities. 

Yıldırım said his remarks were “distorted” by some print media outlets, which he slammed, without naming, for resorting to “cheap media games.”

Erdoğan became the country’s first directly elected president in August 2014 and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has been pushing for a new constitution that would change the country’s parliamentary system in favor of a presidential model. 

“We have already started working [on a draft constitution],” Yıldırım said. “We will let the public know when our work is done and then the necessary steps will be taken by our party group.”  
The three opposition parties in parliament are opposed to a presidential system, while the AKP lacks the adequate number of votes to force through a constitutional change or stage a referendum on the matter. 

The current charter adopted in 1982 replaced the relatively more liberal constitution of 1961, which was also drafted after a military coup.