Turkish flag. (File)InternationalIndiaAfricaA parliamentary republic in the past, less than a decade ago Turkiye switched to a presidential system where the executive power, previously divided between the currently abolished position of prime minister and the president, is now vested solely in the latter.Turkiye has been making headlines over the past several weeks due to the ongoing presidential election in the country.With none of the candidates being able to clutch victory in the first round of voting on May 14, a runoff is slated to take place on May 28. The second round will see Turkish voters chose between Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the incumbent president, and opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu.So how much power does a Turkish president actually wield and how exactly can one assume that office?

Is Turkiye a Democracy?

Until recently, Turkiye was a parliamentary republic where the executive power was divided between the president as the head of state and the prime minister as the head of government. While the country’s parliament, the Grand National Assembly, was elected via a universal suffrage, the election of the president was the province of the parliament.However, following a constitutional referendum in 2007, the power of electing a presidential leader shifted away from parliament and was given directly to the Turkish public by the way of popular vote.Ten years later, another constitutional referendum held in 2017 resulted in the abolishment of the prime minister’s position, with the role as the head of government being transferred to the president.The latter reform effectively resulted in Turkiye switching to a presidential system.

Who Can Be Elected as President of Turkiye?

Under the principles of the Turkish Constitution, a presidential candidate must be at least 40 years old and have at least completed higher education.

How is the President Elected in Turkiye?

Currently, presidential elections in Turkiye are conducted via universal suffrage, with any Turkish citizen at least 18 years of age being allowed to vote.WorldTurkish Interior Minister Accuses Sweden of Electoral Meddling21 May, 18:35 GMTIf one candidate fails to secure the absolute majority of votes, a second round would be held where voters would have to choose between the two candidates who attracted the most votes in the first round.

What Powers Does the Turkish President Have?

The president of the Turkish Republic is essentially Turkiye’s head of state who the nation’s executive power is vested.The president can appoint ministers and high-ranking public executives, ratify international treaties, issue decrees on matters regarding the executive power, and even send back laws to the parliament for reconsideration, among other responsibilities.Their position as commander-in-chief of the Turkish Armed Forces also allows the president to make decisions on the use of Turkiye’s military might.

How long Can Presidents Rule in Turkiye? What’s the Term Limit?

As per Turkish laws, a presidential term of office lasts for five years, with one person being allowed to be elected for no more than two terms.


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