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Turkey election board 'rejects referendum annulment bid'

Turkey election board 'rejects referendum annulment bid'

Reminding OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier had congratulated the Egyptian people for adopting its constitution in a 2014 referendum, Celik termed it a double standard, saying: "There is clearly a double standard". But Metin Feyzioglu, head of the Union of Turkish Bar Associations, said the decision had untold consequences that undermined the referendum.

In Ankara, hundreds of people lined up outside the election board's offices to submit petitions requesting the board reverse its decision to accept the ballots without official stamps.

"When the High Electoral Board (YSK) announces official results, our president will be able to return to the party", Yildirim told reporters.

European leaders adopted a similar tone, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel cautioning that the "tight referendum result shows how deeply divided Turkish society is and that means a big responsibility for the Turkish leadership and for President Erdogan personally".

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of the Republican People's Party, or CHP, made the comments during a speech to his lawmakers Tuesday, challenging the outcome of the referendum on constitutional amendments.

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Critics accuse Erdogan of steering Turkey towards one-man rule.

Erdogan was voted to power in August 2014, the first time a Turkish President had been directly chosen by the popular vote. The cabinet said it hoped the vote would contribute to "more development success across the country". "This is the reddest of all red lines".

Erdogan reiterated his readiness to restore the death penalty at several appearances on Monday, which would effectively end Turkey's decades-long quest to join the EU. Opposition parties have cried fraud, independent election observers protested that "no" campaigners were not allowed to operate in a fair system, and the Turkish electoral oversight board has agreed to address calls for a recount.

The White House previously sidestepped questions about how the referendum was conducted, but the U.S. State Department had echoed the concerns raised by the OSCE, with spokesman Mark Toner pointing to "observed irregularities" on voting day and "an uneven playing field" during the campaign.

One of Turkey's main grievances with the USA is the policy started by the Obama administration of supporting Kurdish fighters in Syria who are fighting IS forces.

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Ten members of the Supreme Election Board (YSK) decided against annulling the vote, while only one voted in favour, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

In an address to legislators from his ruling party on Tuesday, Binali Yildirim said the people had voted to switch from a parliamentary to a presidential system, adding: the "opposition should not speak after the people have spoken".

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Monday angrily rejected criticism by global monitors of a referendum granting him extra powers that was disputed by the opposition and exposed bitter divisions in the country. Opposition parties have complained of a series of irregularities, particularly an electoral board decision to accept ballots without official stamps, as required by Turkish law.

Trump will welcome NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg to the White House on April 12 to discuss "how to strengthen the alliance to cope with challenges to national and global security", the statement said.

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The religious organisation has expanded around the world and has about eight million active followers. Jehovah's Witnesses pray at a regional congress at Traktar Stadium in Minsk, Belarus, July 25, 2015.


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