Baykal meeting: ErdoIan reportedly seeks early election to reverse losses

Turkeyand’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in favor of an early election after a general election on Sunday stripped the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) of its parliamentary majority, forcing it to choose between seeking a coalition with opposition political parties or forming a minority government, according to an opposition deputy who met him on Wednesday.
Deniz Baykal, a deputy from the main opposition Republican Peopleand’s Party (CHP), after a surprise meeting with the president has said privately that Erdogan believes the coalition formation process will be a difficult one, a report in the Handurriyet newspaper said. and”He wants an early election,and” Baykal was quoted as saying in the report.
Speaking to reporters after the two-and-a-half-hour meeting with Erdogan, Baykal said the president understood the importance of forming a coalition government as soon as possible, that he is open to all coalition options and that he does not object to the opposition parties forming a government.
However, in private conversations, Baykal stated that Erdogan appears to be after an early election. and”He is thinking of ways to reverse the new political situation that emerged out of the June 7 election with an early election. I asked him not to approach the post-election situation with a revanchist view and not to push for an early election,and” Baykal was quoted as saying.
Erdoganand’s unexpected meeting with Baykal, a former chairman of the CHP, set off a wave of speculations about the presidentand’s political maneuvering. In his first public remarks since the June 7 election, Erdogan said on Friday that he had invited Baykal to meet him because he is the oldest member of the Parliament. and”I both assessed the process [of coalition formation] and shared with him that I will do my share for the process to proceed uninterrupted,and” he said at a ceremony in Ankara.
Baykal, as the oldest member of the assembly, will chair the first session of the new Parliament after the June 7 election.
Erdogan, who co-founded and led AK Party until he was elected president last year, had fervently campaigned for an election outcome that would give the AK Party a parliamentary majority strong enough to push for constitutional changes that would boost his executive powers.
All opposition parties are categorically against constitutional changes that will bring about a transition into the presidential system sought by Erdogan. Opposition parties are also demanding assurances that Erdogan will stop meddling into government affairs and will act within constitutional bounds.
Handurriyet also reported that Wednesdayand’s meeting took place at the Foreign Ministry building in Ankara, instead of the presidential palace, at Baykaland’s request. The former CHP leader demanded a venue other than the controversial palace after consultations with CHP Chairman Kemal Kiliandcdaroilu, the report said.