Erdogan claims victory in Turkish referendum but result swiftly challenged by opposition

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan claimed a narrow victory in Sunday’s referendum on whether to give him sweeping new powers, but Turkey’s opposition said they would contest the result over fears of voter fraud.

In a dramatic finish to the bitterly-fought referendum campaign, the state-run news agency said Mr Erdoğan’s Yes camp had won around 51 per cent while the No campaign took 49 per cent with 98 per cent of the vote counted.

…Mr Erdoğan said he would immediately begin looking at restoring the death penalty, a move that would end any possibility of Turkey joining the EU.

The Yes vote gives Turkey’s government the authority to scrap the country’s century-old parliamentary system and replace it with a presidential model.

Opponents have warned the new system will send Turkey lurching towards dictatorship as it would concentrate unchecked power in the hands of Mr Erdoğan, who has jailed opponents and cracked down on dissent since a failed coup against him last year. 

Somehow I feel like the opposition challenge isn’t going to go anywhere.

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  • BillyHW

    Oh swell.

  • Alain

    Seeking the return of the Ottoman empire with him as the big poobah.

    • felis gracilis

      First the Ottoman Empire; then the Caliphate.