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Erdogan, allies expected to win parliament majority in June snap elections: Poll

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party and its allies will win a majority in the June 24 snap elections that would enable Ankara to switch to an executive presidency, the results of a new poll show.

According to Press TV, the MetroPoll survey showed on Thursday that the AK Party would win 48 percent of the votes in the upcoming parliamentary votes, which will be held alongside presidential elections, while the party’s alliance partner, the nationalist MHP, would garner six percent.

The poll was conducted on April 13-20 and surveyed 2,063 people in 28 Turkish provinces.

It put support at 21 percent for the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), 12 percent for the newly founded Iyi (Good) Party.

The pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), whose leader is in jail over terror-related charges, would win 10 percent, a minimum required to enter parliament, according to the poll.

Erdogan announced the snap elections on April 18, saying holding the votes more than a year earlier than planned was needed to enable his party to make the constitutional changes narrowly approved in a last year referendum, which will give him sweeping new powers.

He said earlier this week that his election as president in the upcoming vote would not be enough and that the AK Party would need a parliamentary majority to make constitutional changes until the new executive presidential system becomes fully functional.

“Aside from presidential decrees, there will be a need to make several legal changes, implement new regulations or even constitutional changes until the new system is fully functional,” Erdogan said in a speech to parliament.

Erdogan has faced increasing criticism over his championing of the presidency system as many fear it could lead to his authoritarian rule in Turkey.

Those fears have been exacerbated by an ongoing crackdown against people whom the government deems as linked to a failed coup two years ago or those alleged to have helped Kurdish militancy in the country.

Tens of thousands of people have been arrested in Turkey on suspicion of having links to US-based opposition Cleric Fethullah Gulen and the failed coup while more than 110,000 others, including military staff, civil servants and journalists, have been sacked or suspended from work over the same accusations since Erdogan intensified the crackdown following the botched putsch.