Turkish PM Backs Election Overhaul

Court annuls vote with sole Islamist candidate for president
By J. Kelman,  Newser User
Posted May 1, 2007 7:38 PM CDT
Turkish PM Backs Election Overhaul
Leftist demonstrators set barricades fire as they clash with riot police during a May Day rally in Istanbul, Turkey, Tuesday, May 1, 2007. Turkish police charged into crowds of leftist protesters marking the anniversary of a deadly May Day rally in Istanbul, spraying tear gas and kicking and clubbing...   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – Turkey's prime minister put his weight behind a new, popular presidential vote, hours after a court invalidated Friday's election by parliament. The secular opposition had boycotted that vote because of the Islamist background of the lone candidate, foreign minister Abdullah Gul.

The court's ruling forced the hand of PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a Gul supporter, who today called for the general election to be moved from November to June and for an overhaul of the electoral process. "We will take the issue to the nation and pave the way for the election of the president by popular vote," Erdogan said. (Read more Turkey stories.)

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