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Erdogan to take oath as Turkey’s1st Executive President with vast powers

11 July 2018

The event at parliament in the capital, Ankara, concludes the country's transition from a parliamentary system to an executive presidency, in line with the constitutional changes approved in a referendum a year ago.

After taking the oath, Erdogan plans to visit the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the modern, secular, Turkish Republic.

Under the new decree, Erdogan will decide on the promotion of top army officers including colonels, brigadier generals, admirals and generals in the Turkish armed forces.

President Erdogan invited President Lungu along with Gabonese President Ali Bongo, Jose Mario Vaz of Guinea Bissau and Equatorial Guinea President, Teodoro Obiang Nguema to his inauguration.

In parliamentary polls held the same day, his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) secured a majority through its alliance with the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).

Erdogan pledged to build a "strong Turkey" with a powerful defence industry and expanding economy.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev was present, in a new sign of the warm ties between Ankara and Moscow, as was Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, regarded with disdain by Washington but an ally of Erdogan.

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Erdogan, who has already transformed Turkey in 15 years of rule, took his oath of office in parliament under the new presidential system denounced by opponents as a one-man regime.

A special one lira coin (less than 25 United States cents) was minted for guests with the image of the presidential palace, dated July 9, 2018.

He then unveiled the first cabinet under the new system, appointing his son-in-law Berat Albayrak, 40, to the crucial post of finance minister, in a move that appeared to rattle markets. The Turkish lira dropped three percent on the news, but rebounded slightly on Tuesday.

Current Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu could, in theory, continue in his job but reports have said Erdogan may choose his spokesman, Ibrahim Kalin, or even spy chief Hakan Fidan to succeed him. An adviser to Erdogan later said that the governor's term would remain at five years. "We are leaving behind the system that has in the past cost our country a heavy price in political and economic chaos".

Investors were waiting to see whether cabinet appointees would include individuals seen as market-friendly, and particularly whether Mehmet Simsek, now deputy prime minister, would continue to oversee the economy. "In other words, Turkey will be an institutionalized autocracy".

There are 16 ministers in Erdogan's streamlined new cabinet, which Erdogan has said will be more efficient and act faster. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member Turkey's relations with its Western allies have been strained by disputes with the United States over military strategy in Syria and by European Union criticism of Ankara's large-scale purges of state institutions, armed forces, police and media following the failed coup.

Erdogan faces economic problems such as high interest rates and inflation as well as a plunging currency that has lost 17 percent of its value against the dollar since the start of 2018.

Erdogan to take oath as Turkey’s1st Executive President with vast powers