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France 24 | Ruling party leads, but fails to sweep local polls | France 24
Turkey's ruling AK Party is leading in local elections, but PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party failed to win the key Kurdish city of Diyarbakir, as well as the secularist stronghold of Izmir, amid a nationwide slide in support.

REUTERS - Turkey's ruling AK Party won local elections on Sunday but Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, hurt by a weak economy, fell short of a sweeping victory that would have smoothed the way for reforms in the EU candidate.


The AK Party was unable to win the city of Diyarbakir, the largest in the Kurdish southeast, and several other key cities, including Izmir. The secularist opposition also made inroads in Istanbul, Turkey's largest city, and in the capital Ankara.


The vote, the first time the Islamist-rooted AK Party had suffered a slide in support since it swept to power in 2002, took place against a backdrop of record unemployment and a worsening economy. Turkey's once booming economy has been severely hit by the global economic crisis.

by Fran on Mon Mar 30th, 2009 at 02:08:44 PM EST
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Turkey's Governing Party Wins City Races - NYTimes.com

ISTANBUL -- The governing party, led by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, won a narrow victory in nationwide municipal elections on Sunday, preliminary results showed, but registered declines in a number of major cities.

By late evening, the CNN-Turk news channel was reporting that Mr. Erdogan's party, Justice and Development, led with 39.13 percent of the vote, while the main opposition, the Republican People's Party, had 22.83 percent, and the nationalist People's Action Party had 16.22 percent.

The elections were seen as a referendum on the performance of Turkey's politicians, in particular that of Mr. Erdogan, a former Islamist who has pressed for Turkey's membership in the European Union.

Early results seemed to send a message: Mr. Erdogan's party was winning by much narrower margins than in 2007, when it garnered 47 percent of the vote. Many attributed the decline to the economic downturn and to allegations of widespread corruption among members.

by Fran on Mon Mar 30th, 2009 at 02:15:49 PM EST
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reforms in the EU candidate.

The way the media labels foreign politicians (our friend or our enemy) so casually never fails to impress me. It's discreet, persistent, and it shapes news very much.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Mar 31st, 2009 at 07:11:21 AM EST
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Lazy thinking, rubbish reporting.

Most economists teach a theoretical framework that has been shown to be fundamentally useless. -- James K. Galbraith
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Mar 31st, 2009 at 07:12:53 AM EST
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