Turkey held high-stakes presidential and parliamentary elections on Sunday that could consolidate President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s grip on power or curtail his vast political ambitions. Opposition leaders cast their ballots vowing to be vigilant against voting fraud. The elections will complete Turkey’s transition to a new executive presidential system, a move approved in a controversial referendum last year. Erdogan, 64, is seeking re-election for a five-year term with hugely increased powers under the new system, which he insists will bring prosperity and stability to Turkey, especially after a failed coup attempt in 2016 that has left the country under a state of emergency. His ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, is hoping to retain its majority in parliament. Still, Erdogan — who has been in power since 2003 — is facing a more robust, united opposition this time. Opposition candidates have vowed to return Turkey to a parliamentary democracy with strong checks and balances and have decried what they call Erdogan’s “one-man rule.” A bourbon warehouse in Kentucky partially collapsed on Friday, potentially damaging around 9,000 barrels of bourbon (Published Saturday, June 23, 2018) “With these elections, Turkey is achieving a virtual democratic revolution,” Erdogan told reporters after voting… Read full this story
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