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Sunday
Apr162017

Turkey's Erdogan claims victory in referendum to expand powers

moodboard/Thinkstock(ISTANBUL) -- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared victory in a referendum to significantly expand his powers.

According to vote tallies posted by the state-run Anadolu news agency, about 51 percent of voters supported the constitutional changes while over 48 percent voted "no."

Turkey's main opposition party has vowed to challenge the results.

On Sunday, Erdogan called on the opposition to respect the outcome of the referendum. He said according to BBC, "Today... Turkey has taken a historic decision. With the people, we have realised the most important reform in our history."

With the new constitutional changes, the country will no longer have a prime minister, the president can appoint top officials and judges, the president will be limited to two five-year terms, and more.

Turkey has been under a state of emergency ever since there was an attempted coup last summer. Tens of thousands were arrested and over 100,000 government officials were fired or suspended from their jobs in connection with the failed coup.

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