Turkey's AKP: President’s role no coalition talk issue

Turkey's AKP: President’s role no coalition talk issue

Turkeys AKP: President’s role no coalition talk issue

CİHAN photo

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has insistently reiterated that his Justice and Development Party (AKP) will not become involved in negotiations to form a governing coalition if prospective counterparts question President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s role as part of the talks.

However, speaking just a few hours after Davutoğlu on June 30, Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, whose party received the second highest number of seats in parliament in the June 7 election, remained unyielding. Kılıçdaroğlu repeated that, for them, any possible coalition scenario would have to embrace their 14 principles which included ensuring Erdoğan does not exceed his constitutional powers.

“Just like how speakership is not connected with coalition, so neither the presidency nor the president is a part of the coalition negotiations, and won’t be. We will not be a part of a negotiation which will aggrieve the presidency and will make the president the question of debate,” Davutoğlu said, describing their attitude as “a necessity of respect” for both themselves and the president, as he addressed newly elected deputies of his party at a parliamentary group meeting. 

“No one can see us as a part of this kind of bargain. When it comes to our president and his seat, people who talk about constitutional borders, should not forget that the appointment of the prime minister is done by the president as a constitutional obligation. We invite them to [adhere to] the constitutional framework. In this framework, I want to emphasize one more time with strong statements that the impudent factoids and treatments toward our president must end, and in order to normalize and maintain legitimate the politics, we should have great respect for our president without fail,” Davutoğlu said.

Yet, also addressing his party’s parliamentary group, Kılıçdaroğlu listed their 14 principles and directly called on Davutoğlu.

“I want to call out to Davutoğlu again; others should not speak on behalf of you. You should talk first about the issue of Syria. You are going to talk so that we notice that you are the prime minister. Others are talking on behalf of you, but you stop speaking and keep quiet,” he said.

As he spoke of their principle regarding presidential authorities, the CHP leader defined it as “sine qua non” for themselves.

“I’ve said several times, and I’m saying it again. Look at our history and our practices, a president talks concisely and promptly,” he said. “He does not talk day and night. ‘I do not permit anyone to argue about my legitimacy;’ in that case, you will stay within constitutional borders. But you violate the constitution, deny your partiality and you say ‘respect me.’ Sorry about that, we don’t show respect to that kind of behavior.”