Turkish prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu announced his resignation, paving the way for the country’s president to pursue a tighter grip on power.
“I decided that for the unity of the (ruling party) a change of chairman would be more appropriate. I am not considering running at the May 22 congress,” Davutoglu told the nation.
The decision is not effective immediately. The party will hold an emergency convention on May 22 to select a new party leader who would also replace the premier.
Davutoglu indicated he did not plan to resign from the party, saying he would “continue the struggle” as a ruling party legislator. He also pledged loyalty to Erdogan.
The shake-up is seen as the outcome of irreconcilable differences between Erdogan, who would like to see the country transition to a presidential system, and Davutoglu.
After being elected president in 2014, Erdogan chose Davutoglu to succeed him as premier and leader of the AKP party.
Davutoglu was expected to play a backseat role as Erdogan pushed ahead with plans to make the largely ceremonial presidency into an all-powerful position.
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