Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pushes meeting with PM forward amid rift


Turkish President (L) and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu

’s president has pushed a regular meeting with his prime minister forward by a day this week amid increasingly-visible tensions between the two.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan is to meet Ahmet Davutoglu on Wednesday instead of Thursday at 6 p.m. (1500 GMT), the presidential office said on its website.
The two have been regularly falling in one another’s bad books, each desiring more room for himself in the country’s twofold power structure.
Erdogan is pushing to establish a presidential system in place of the current parliamentary system based on the claim that the country cannot be run by two strongmen.
“A car that has two drivers cannot go without an accident. It will inevitably have an accident,” said Ismail Kahraman, the speaker of the Grand National Assembly (Turkish parliament), who is an Erdogan ally, in description of the bid.
Davutoglu has, however, asserted that such a system would eat away at his sphere of authority.
The two have also locked horns over the European Union’s offer to provide Turks with visa-free travel across the Schengen area in exchange for Ankara stemming the refugee inrush into Europe. The premier has to some extent espoused the plan, while Erdogan has not shown as much eagerness.
Dealing a body blow to Davutoglu’s political leeway, the country’s ruling Justice and Development Party stripped him late last month of the power to elect provincial party officials.
Ruling party AK spokesman Omer Celik has, however, denied that there is any “crisis” in the party, describing the decision to take away Davutoglu’s appointment authorities as a “technical” move that, he said, the premier had himself signed off on.
The standoff and the associated investor fears caused Turkish shares to suffer their biggest drop in more than five months on Tuesday.

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