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Mar 5, 2014

Insight -Turkey’s Erdogan rallies popular support in power struggle

ANKARA (Reuters) – Before cheering crowds, he dons the mantle of tragic hero, comparing his enemies to leeches, reciting a poem that once saw him jailed for sedition and invoking the memory of his political hero, toppled and hanged by the generals.

Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan, shaken by a graft scandal he says is concocted by a former ally, is fighting to secure his political future in the run up to March polls. But more than that, he sees at stake the legacy of an 11-year drive to reshape Turkey, breaking the hold of a secular, urban elite.

Mar 5, 2014

Turkey’s Erdogan rallies popular support in power struggle

ANKARA (Reuters) – Before cheering crowds, he dons the mantle of tragic hero, comparing his enemies to leeches, reciting a poem that once saw him jailed for sedition and invoking the memory of his political hero, toppled and hanged by the generals.

Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan, shaken by a graft scandal he says is concocted by a former ally, is fighting to secure his political future in the run up to March polls. But more than that, he sees at stake the legacy of an 11-year drive to reshape Turkey, breaking the hold of a secular, urban elite.

Feb 26, 2014

Turkish foreign minister says world has failed Syria

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey’s foreign minister said Syria’s worsening war now posed a danger to all countries because President Bashar al-Assad’s government had been allowed to continue its “crimes” while jihadists from around the world flooded in to fight him.

Ahmet Davutoglu told Reuters a robust international strategy including “real intelligence cooperation” and withdrawal of all foreign fighters was needed to end the conflict and help millions of Syrians devastated by violence.

Feb 25, 2014

Turkish PM says tapes of talk with son a fabrication

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan accused political rivals of shameless fabrication of a telephone tap of him telling his son to dispose of large sums of money on the day police raided houses in a graft inquiry into his government.

In a dramatic session of parliament after posting of the 11-minute audio tape on YouTube, Erdogan said his political enemies had penetrated encrypted state communications. He did not name the opponents but made it clear he was talking of a network run by former ally, Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen.

Feb 25, 2014

Turkish PM’s office says Erdogan recordings are fake

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s office described as a dirty immoral fabrication voice recordings purporting to reveal Erdogan telling his son to dispose of large sums of money on the day police raided houses in a graft inquiry into his government.

The recording posted on YouTube, whose authenticity Reuters could not verify, marked a sharp escalation in a graft crisis Erdogan’s government says has been concocted by a U.S.-based cleric seeking to undermine his 11-year rule by using influence in the police and judiciary.

Feb 18, 2014

Turkey’s Gul approves law tightening Internet controls

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish President Abdullah Gul approved a new law tightening control of the Internet on Tuesday in a move bolstering embattled Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan but raising concerns about free speech.

The legislation, along with a law increasing government influence over the judiciary, is seen by Erdogan’s critics as an authoritarian response to a corruption inquiry shaking his government, a bid to stymie court cases and to stop leaks circulating online.

Feb 18, 2014

Turkey’s Gul seen approving tighter control of Internet, courts

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s president has signaled he will approve new laws tightening controls over the courts and the Internet, bolstering embattled Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan but deepening concerns about free speech and the rule of law.

The two bills, passed by parliament this month and awaiting President Abdullah Gul’s approval, are seen by Erdogan’s critics as an authoritarian response to a corruption inquiry shaking his government, a bid to stymie court cases and to stop leaks circulating online.

Feb 11, 2014

Turkish editor hits out at media coercion under Erdogan

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – A top Turkish mainstream newspaper editor has openly decried widespread government pressure on the media, in an unusually blunt outburst against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s leadership months ahead of elections.

Erdogan is facing one of the greatest challenges of his 11-year rule as he battles a graft scandal he sees as orchestrated to unseat him, while fighting an open feud with an influential U.S.-based cleric whose followers say they number in the millions.

Feb 3, 2014

Turkish government fights graft scandal with probe of ‘parallel state’

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey is launching a criminal investigation into an alleged “parallel state” backed by a U.S.-based cleric and accused by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan of orchestrating a corruption scandal to unseat him, senior Turkish officials said.

A close ally of the cleric accused the government of conducting a campaign of ‘incitements and lynchings”.

Jan 30, 2014

Insight: Fight for Istanbul likely to shape Turkish political landscape

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Immaculately coiffed with a camera-ready smile, Mustafa Sarigul’s composure cracks a little as his campaign bus swings towards Istanbul’s old city walls.

Two months before elections which could reshape Turkey’s political landscape, the main opposition candidate for mayor of its biggest city is taking the fight to a bastion of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted AK Party.

    • About Nick

      "Based in Lagos since early 2008, responsible for coverage of Africa's most populous nation. Previously based in Senegal for four years, covering West and Central Africa, and before that in Germany and Britain."
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