Autocrats around the world congratulated Recep Erdogan on his victory in Sunday’s Turkish presidential election, despite independent observers indicating that the vote was flawed. According to preliminary results, Erdogan won around 53 percent support compared to the 31 percent by opposition candidate Muharrem Ince. Opposition candidates and independent observers reported allegations of vote rigging and ballot manipulation.During his presidential campaign, Erdogan sought approval to implement a number of controversial reforms that will give him the power to dissolve parliament, issue executive decrees and declare a national state of emergency. The reforms also provide him with additional powers to appoint people into senior government positions and interfere in the judiciary. As a result, many opponents now fear the country will turn into a dictatorship where Erdogan rules by decree. On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke of Erdogan’s “great political authority and mass support” that he said would help “solve Turkey’s pressing social and economic tasks (and) strengthen the country’s position on the international arena.” Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro, with whom Turkey shares warm diplomatic relations, congratulated him on an “amazing victory.” Last December, Erdogan invited Maduro to an anti-Israel meeting with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Turkey. “I congratulate… Read full this story
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