associate sponsors


Turkey accuses U.N. of meddling in its internal politics before referendum | Reuters

ANKARA Turkey accused the United Nations on Thursday of meddling in its internal politics shortly before a referendum that could give President Tayyip Erdogan sweeping presidential powers.In a statement earlier in the day, U.N. rights experts said Turkey's security crackdown after a failed coup attempt in July had undermined the chance for informed debate on the referendum. They said a state of emergency imposed after the abortive putsch had been used to justify repressive measures that might well intensify if Erdogan's powers are enhanced.Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Huseyin Muftuoglu said the U.N. statement was "worrisome" and its timing indicated a deliberate political approach ahead of the referendum.

"The fact that the statement came right before the April 16 public vote and contained political comments strengthens the view that this approach is deliberate," Muftuoglu said in a statement. He said Turkey was calling on the United Nations to continue constructive dialogue and cooperation.The security clampdown since the coup attempt has seen more than 100,000 people from a wide range of professions sacked or dismissed and scores of media outlets closed.

It has raised concern among democracy and rights groups and Turkey's Western allies but the government argues the purges are justified by the extent of the threat to the state on July.Sunday's referendum has polarised the nation. The changes could replace the country's parliamentary system with an executive presidency, marking the biggest change in Turkey's political system in its modern history.

A narrow majority of Turks will vote "Yes" in the referendum, two opinion polls showed on Thursday.Erdogan and his supporters argue that strengthening the presidency would avert instability associated with coalition governments, at a time when Turkey faces major security threats from Islamist and Kurdish militants.His critics fear a further drift into authoritarianism under a leader they regard as bent on eroding modern Turkey's democracy and secular foundations. (Reporting by Tulay Karadeniz; Writing by Tuvan Gumrukcu; editing by Mark Heinrich)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date: Apr 14, 2017 00:15 AM

Also Watch

Social Media Star: Abhishek Bachchan, Varun Grover reveal how they handle selfies, trolls and broccoli
  • Monday, July 16, 2018 It's a Wrap: Soorma star Diljit Dosanjh and Hockey legend Sandeep Singh in conversation with Parul Sharma
  • Monday, July 16, 2018 Watch: Dalit man in Uttar Pradesh defies decades of prejudice by taking out baraat in Thakur-dominated Nizampur village
  • Monday, July 16, 2018 India's water crisis: After govt apathy, Odisha farmer carves out 3-km canal from hills to tackle scarcity in village
  • Sunday, July 15, 2018 Maurizio Sarri, named as new Chelsea manager, is owner Roman Abramovich's latest gamble in quest for 'perfect football'

Also See