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Turkish president approves constitutional change bill, refer

ANKARA, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday ratified the constitutional amendment package for presidential system change, paving way for a referendum on April 16.

The popular vote is planned to take place on April 16, Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus told state-run TRT broadcaster on Friday.

"God willing, Turkey will start a new era on the evening of April 16," he added.

The High Election Board will announce the date for referendum, but the procedure requires April 16 for the popular vote.

On Dec. 30, 2016, a constitutional committee of deputies from the ruling AK Party and the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) submitted a proposed bill to Parliament for ratification.

The parliament passed the constitutional amendment on Jan. 21 in two rounds of voting for 18 articles. A total of 339 deputies voted in favor of the amendment, exceeding the 330-vote threshold to bring it to a referendum.

The constitutional change will bring a shift of regime change in Turkey with a strong partisan presidential system that will take over all authorities of the prime minister and cabinet.


Spotlight: Turkey at threshold for shift to presidential system

ANKARA, Jan. 21 (Xinhua) -- Turkey is on the threshold for shift to an executive presidential system as the parliament approved early Saturday an 18-item constitutional amendment package.

"A new door in Turkish history in the lives of the Turkish people has been cracked open today. With our people's 'yes' vote, this door will be completely opened," Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag posted on his official Twitter account.  Full story

Turkish parliament approves constitutional changes

ANKARA, Jan. 21 (Xinhua) -- Turkish lawmakers approved the bill on 18-article constitutional changes in a final vote early Saturday, Anadolu Agency reported. Full story

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