Lessons from Turkey referendum
Rapporteur-Farbod Dehghani: Recep Tayyip Erdogan, 63-year-old leader of Turkey's Justice and Development Party achieved one of the greatest of his dreams.
After a long debate, finally a referendum to change the constitution, was approved by the Turkish people which means Turkish governmental system will be change from parliamentary to presidential and Erdogan rule this country.
Turkey referendum as the result of months of conflict between the ruling party and the opposition, The difference may be circumstances were confirmed by the 51% yes and 49% no, represents a serious gap in Turkish society.
The fate of Turkey is at stake, too. Ever since Mr Erdoğan took power, the country has been a test of what happens when democracy is put together with political Islam. Turkey was also an example of the benign influence of the European Union, which encouraged open markets and civil rights. Some years ago Mr Erdoğan began to reject all that for nationalism and autocracy. Lately he has courted Russia and the Gulf monarchies. He would use a yes as a popular endorsement of that illiberal path.
Since Mr Erdoğan has all the advantages, anything but a resounding victory ought to count as a defeat. At least 40% of the country – religious and conservative – will support him come what may. He chose the timing of the vote in the wake of a failed coup last summer, when most of Turkey had united behind him. He has attacked the EU, Turkey’s biggest market, in an attempt to stir up nationalist support. The authorities have nearly 50,000 people in detention, whom it calls coup-supporters and terrorists; it has sacked 100,000 more. Abetted by a captive, frightened judiciary, the police are rounding up anyone Mr Erdoğan designates as an enemy.(1)