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Turkish PM says AK Party all for forming coalition government

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Davutoglu says his party, AK Party, has never used the threat of early elections to force other parties into a coalition.

The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) is ready to do everything to form a coalition government, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Wednesday, Anadolu Agency reported.

“We are ready to do all we can to establish a coalition government. We have never threatened with early elections to force other parties into a coalition,” the premier said during a live interview, which aired on Wednesday on the Turkish Haberturk and Show TV networks.

In the 7 June general election, the AK Party received 41 percent of the votes and the highest number of seats.

As none of the four parties that passed the 10 percent electoral threshold – the AKP, the Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) – had the majority necessary to form a single-party government, they are forced to negotiate to form some type of coalition following the opening of parliament with the ceremonial oath-taking by MPs later this month.

Davutoglu said it was the natural thing for the AKP to assume the leadership position and establish a government having received the highest number of votes.

“Let’s say this did not happen. In that case, we would be the best opposition party there is, but right now this is not an option,” he said.

Last week, representatives of long-time rivals AKP and CHP were reportedly in talks about a potential coalition.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier this week that he would ask the AKP to form a government once the official results are announced.

“It is unthinkable that the country is left without a government,” Erdogan told Turkish media on Sunday aboard his presidential plane while returning from a trip to Azerbaijan.

“I will first give the mandate (for talks) to the head of the political party that won the most votes,” he said, referring to Prime Minister and AK Party leader Ahmet Davutoglu.

“If it (a coalition) cannot be established, I will then give the mandate to the head of the party that finished second,” he said, referring to CHP chief Kemal Kilicdaroglu.

Erdogan gave no indication, however, of what his preferred combination for an AKP-led coalition would be.

Turkey’s constitution stipulates that a new government must be formed within 45 days following the president’s demand.

If no government is formed, the country will have to hold early parliamentary elections.

Resource: Middle East Eye, June 18, 2015

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