Turkish opposition challenges presidential powers vote

Turkish opposition challenges presidential powers vote

There was no confirmation from the White House about a meeting with President Erdogan.

The petitions were filed by the country's Republican People's Party, Peoples' Democratic Party and the Patriotic Party.

Turkey's main opposition party launched a legal challenge at a top court on Friday to last-minute changes to voting rules in the referendum that saw President Recep Tayyip Erdogan win expanded powers.

Turkish opposition challenges presidential powers vote

"We are filing an appeal to the council of state today demanding the cancellation of the YSK decision to accept unstamped ballots", CHP Deputy Chairman Bulent Tezcan said.

The pro-Kurdish opposition HDP, which had appealed along with the CHP for the referendum to be annulled, said the late decision by the electoral board to allow un-stamped ballots meant it was impossible to determine how many invalid or fake votes may have been counted.

CHP officials said they would contest the decision at the Constitutional Court and if necessary, the European Court of Human Rights.

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The Supreme Election Board made its decisions. "Every time we spoke to one another, I have become more hopeful", he said.

The report claims Erdogan will meet Trump to discuss, among other issues, Turkey's demand for the United States to extradite Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic cleric exiled in Pennsylvania whom Ankara claims is the leader of a terrorist sect. He particularly stressed that the matter is neither within the authority of the Turkish Constitutional Court nor within the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).

Before the electoral board's announcement, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that the opposition had the right to file objections, but warned that calling for street protests was unacceptable.

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Global observers had said the decision to count the ballots "contradicted the law" and removed a safeguard against fraud. An estimated 51 percent of Turks voted "yes" to the presidential system, while 49 percent voted "no".

The eroding personality cult of Ataturk suffered its biggest blow yet when Turkey voted April 16 to expand the powers of the presidency, undercutting the parliamentary system that Ataturk imposed almost a century ago.

- The elected president can be a party member (current legislation doesn't allow this).

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