Turkey to hold referendum next spring on stronger presidency: deputy PM

Reuters News
Posted: Dec 09, 2016 4:22 AM

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey plans a referendum next March, April or May on constitutional changes that would expand the powers of the president, before holding presidential and parliamentary polls together in 2019, a deputy prime minister said on Friday.

Nurettin Canikli told A Haber TV in an interview that the ruling AK Party would submit its proposal on the constitutional changes to parliament on Friday and that the nationalist MHP opposition would support the bill.

Any constitutional change needs the support of at least 330 deputies in Turkey's 550-seat assembly to go to a referendum. The AKP has 316 lawmakers eligible for voting, and the MHP 39.

Canikli ruled out any early election before 2019.

(Reporting by Orhan Coskun and Ercan Gurses; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Daren Butler)