19 April, 2021

Recep Tay­yip Erdogan A Turkish Rondo

Erdogan’s poll win, and power grab, make him master of Turkey

Photograph by PTI
Recep Tay­yip Erdogan A Turkish Rondo

Democracy, with its in-built “checks-and-balances”, should ideally prevent autocrats from concentrating power or foil any such design that makes itself apparent. Turkey, howe­ver, seems to be hurtling in the opposite direction. Over the past couple of years, various Turkish institutions appear to be working in tandem in ensuring that they help produce the most adamantly autocratic leader in the hist­ory of modern Turkey.

If proof were needed, it was amply provided on June 24, when Recep Tay­yip Erdogan was re-elected as president and moved another step closer towa­rds his dream of becoming the new ‘Father of Turkey’ and moulding the country according to his whims and fancies.

The 64-year old president’s re-election—with a significantly extended brief—not only abolishes the post of prime minister, but also gives him sweeping powers to enact law by decree, dismiss ministers, judges and parliament itself, besides guaranteeing immunity to him and his family from prosecution. His renewed mandate will now keep him...

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