Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Turkey's new top soldier appointed by first presidential decree

Erdogan urges 'correct evaluation' of Turkish elections Buhari congratulates Turkish leader Erdogan
Ginger Lawrence | 10 July, 2018, 11:08

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has named his son-in-law as the country's finance minister after being sworn in to another five-year term.

The lira, which has lost almost a fifth of its value against the dollar this year, dropped almost 3 percent to 4.74 to the dollar minutes after the cabinet announcement.

The lira has been battered by concern about Erdogan´s drive for lower interest rates and by comments in May that he planned to take greater control of the economy after the June elections. For some, it is the coronation of a new Turkey.

"There is no stopping for us until we bring Turkey - which we saved from plotters, coupists and political and economic hitmen, street gangs and terrorist organisations - to among the top 10 economies in the world", he said.

His inauguration at the 1,150-room presidential palace will be attended by 22 presidents and 28 prime ministers and parliament speakers, among others, state News Agency, Anadolu, reported. Armed forces chief of staff Hulusi Akar was named defence minister.

President Erdogan invited President Lungu along with Gabonese President Ali Bongo, Jose Mario Vaz of Guinea Bissau and Equatorial Guinea President, Teodoro Obiang Nguema to his inauguration.

Turkey is expected to adopt an increasingly nationalistic line in its foreign policy with the conservative and Islamic-leaning AKP and the nationalist MHP in parliament.

He says the changes, the biggest overhaul of governance since the modern Turkish republic was founded from the ruins of the Ottoman Empire nearly a century ago, are needed to drive Turkey's economic growth and guarantee its security.

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On Monday, the chain announced on social media that its time as IHOb, the International House of Burgers , had come to an end. While pancakes are once again at the forefront, the new line of burgers will remain on the menu.

His supporters, however, insist Erdogan deserves to be empowered as president, saying he has steered Turkey through its years of economic progress while rewarding working classes in the country.

After taking his oath, Erdogan visited the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey.

"INSTITUTIONALISED AUTOCRACY " Marc Pierini, a former European Union ambassador to Turkey and visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe, said Erdogan´s new powers would effectively make him a "super-executive president".

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan greets deputies during a meeting of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey in Ankara, Turkey on July 7, 2018.

Erdogan has been in power for 15 years, first as prime minister, and then as president, from 2014. "In other words, Turkey will be an institutionalized autocracy". The prime ministry will not exist in the new system. However, major Western leaders would not be in attendance, according to Reuters. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member Turkey's relations with its Western allies have been strained by disputes with the United States over military strategy in Syria and by European Union criticism of Ankara's large-scale purges of state institutions, armed forces, police and media following the failed coup.

On Sunday, Erdogan fired more than 18,600 people from government jobs for allegedly posing a security risk to the state.

Erdogan will this week immediately turn to foreign policy, visiting northern Cyprus and Azerbaijan followed by more challenging encounters at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels where he will meet his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump and other leaders.