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Turkey snap elections set for Nov. 1

Erdogan formally called for a fresh parliamentary election late on Monday in a widely anticipated move

Published: Updated:

The Turkish election board confirmed that snap elections, which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for earlier this week, will be heard on November 1.

Erdogan called for a new election after an inconclusive vote in June, and the collapse of coalition-building efforts. He said last week that the election was likely to take place on Nov. 1.

Earlier, he appointed Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to form an interim government that will lead Turkey to the new election.

Following the announcement, the leader of the Republican People's Party and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) MHP reiterated that its deputies will not take part in the interim government.

The situation is unprecedented in modern Turkish history -- never before have parties failed to form a coalition after elections and new polls been required.

Erdogan wants the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) he co-founded to win back the overall majority it lost in June for the first time since it came to power in 2002.

The MHP’s refusal to take part in the interim government forces Davutoglu to form an interim cabinet with the pro-Kurdish People's Democracy Party (HDP) as well as non-partisan figures outside parliament.

The prospect of forming a government -- however brief -- with the HDP is an unsettling prospect for Davutoglu who has accused the party of being a front for outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Erdogan is hoping to emerge stronger from the next elections, with his eyes on a powerful presidency with full executive authority like in France or the United States.

To do this, the AKP needs to win a three-fifths majority with least 330 seats in parliament to change the constitution by calling a referendum.

A majority of two-thirds -- 367 seats -- would allow the changes to be passed without a referendum.

Turkey is being dragged into political uncertainty during one of the most critical periods in its recent history.

The economy is in decline while the country is on a heightened security alert with the government waging a dual offensive.

[With AP and AFP]