Form of government
Turkey is a country with a republican presidential democracy system, as the President presents the roles of heads of state and government officially. Historically, attempts to become a democratic state could be noted from mid-twentieth century, after Ataturk’s (the first president of the Turkish Republic) death. Before 2018 the prime minister position was active until it was abolished due to political reforms. The country’s form of government is outlined by the Constitution of Turkey, which determines the rights and laws of its citizens. Furthermore, the executive branch, the Cabinet, forms the central organ of the state. The legislative branch is represented by the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, while the judicial section includes the supreme courts: Constitutional Court, Court of Cassation, Council of State, and Court of Jurisdictional Disputes.
Main governing and opposition leaders, political parties
The current President of the Turkish Republic is Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who has been serving as the head of state since August 2014. According to BBC News, Erdoğan was a founding member of one of the political parties over ten years ago, which progressively increased his influence before his presidential career. Prior to the 2014 election, the political candidate was the state’s prime minister. Furthermore, the multi-party system of Turkey includes over 20 registered political parties. The leading political party is the right-wing Justice and Development Party, consequently represented by the President. The most prominent of the oppositional leaders is Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, a member of the Republican People’s Party.
Outcomes of recent elections and changes in the political system
The elections concern the presidential position as well as the political parties for a five-year term. The most recent elections occurred in 2018, with Recep Tayyip Erdoğan being elected as the President of the Republic of Turkey and consequently the Justice and Development Party winning the parliamentary election. The upcoming 2023 election will be an indicator of whether the Turkish political system is changing. As reported by the ECPS, the Justice and Development Party has significantly contributed to a more conservative state while spreading Muslim ideologies across its borders, an idea not approved by all citizens. Therefore, the 2023 votes will play a crucial role in determining the country’s political stance.
The government’s key and current domestic, economic policies
The country’s key economic policies are centered around a mixed economic system, with both private businesses and government-regulated institutions operating. The current role of agriculture in the gross value rates has lowered since 2010, according to UNData. Moreover, the industry as a major component of the economic sector has also decreased in a similar pattern, yet services and international exports significantly increased in gross value. As noted by Hale, Turkey’s main domestic policies are highly dependent on the implemented foreign policies related to the current political party and President.
The country’s political environment and issues
The country’s geographical location allows for control of the Turkish Straits while also increasing its risk of bordering a conflicting state, such as Syria, Iraq, or Libya. Internally, protests emerged in 2021 as the economic sector experienced inflations and Turkish citizens began to express discontent with the Presidential policies. Furthermore, while relations with the EU have improved in the past year, the state’s missile purchase from Russia could become an issue in regards to the country’s international political position. Possible sanctions and loss of imported supplies are major threats to Turkey’s economy if the government does not support NATO policies.
BBC News. “Turkey Country Profile”. Web.
GlobalEdge. “Turkey:Introduction”. Web.
Hale, William. 2016. “Turkey’s domestic politics, public opinion and Middle East policy.” Palgrave Communications 1 (2): 1-8.
Selçuk, Orcun, and Dilara Hekimci.2020. “The rise of the democracy–authoritarianism cleavage and opposition coordination in Turkey (2014–2019).” Democratization 8 (27): 1496-1514.
UNdata. “Turkey”. Web.
Yilmaz, Ihsan. 2021. “The AKP’s Authoritarian, Islamist Populism: Carving out a New Turkey.” European Center for Populism Studies.