Turkey to hold snap elections on 24 June, says Erdoğan

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Turkey will hold snap presidential and parliamentary elections on 24 June, brought forward by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan from November 2019.

Both presidential and parliamentary elections will be held on the same day.

"We were in favour of waiting until November 2019 for the elections".

Turkey looks set to hold the elections amid its state of emergency, with the national security council having on April 18 recommended to parliament that the special regime, brought in following the July 2016 coup, is still required for the governance of the country and should be extended for a seventh time. The official noted that his party would defend August 26, 2018, as the date for the early elections.

The date set by Erdogan will precipitate an intense election campaign as opposition parties seek to challenge his grip. The victor of the presidential election - Erdogan will most probably be the victor - will enjoy dramatically strengthened powers as they were adopted by a marginal majority in the referendum of April 2017.

Though tensions between Russian Federation and Turkey remain prominent, as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan opposes Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad while Moscow provides him military and economic support, President Vladimir Putin visited Ankara this month to boost bilateral ties.

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Erdogan, who has long said that the elections would be held as scheduled, is meeting with Bahceli on Wednesday.

In a highly unusual move, Erdogan then made his statement in person at the palace, standing in front of a row of Turkish flags. The changes will take effect with the next election. His powers were already extended through a constitutional referendum previous year, amid a massive crackdown following a 2016 failed coup attempt.

Bahceli's small MHP party is expected to form an alliance with Erdogan's ruling AK Party in the parliamentary polls.

The main Turkey opposition party called for an end to it, insisting that a vote could not be held under emergency rule.

"Erdogan sees early elections as somehow dishonourable", Fadi Hakura, who manages the Turkey Project at Chatham House told bne IntelliNews on March 30.

The elections are the first to be called early in Turkey since 2002.

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