Turkey: Parliament renews 1st round of election

May 6, 2007 11:24


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Turkey's legislators on Sunday assembled to renew a first-round of presidential elections canceled last week after the country's top court annulled the vote, which looked certain to lead to the election of an Islamic-rooted president. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, a close ally of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is the sole candidate in the voting that is being repeated after the Constitutional Court, siding with the secular opposition, annulled it last week on grounds that there were not enough legislators present for the voting. Erdogan's party has said it was trying to win enough backing to elect Gul but analysts said there was little chance the party would be able to reach a quorum of 367 - or a two-thirds majority - this time either. The opposition boycotted the vote in Parliament last week and was expected to do the same Sunday. Gul said before the vote that he would withdraw his candidacy if he failed to get elected Sunday.

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