US hails Turkish election

The White House on Monday hailed Turkey's elections and dismissed concerns that the country's military might challenge the outcome.

US hails Turkish election
The White House on Monday hailed Turkey's elections and dismissed concerns that the country's military might challenge the outcome.

"It was a free and fair election and Turkey remains an important ally of the United States, so we congratulate them," spokesman Tony Snow said as Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan prepared for a second term.

Asked whether Washington had any concerns that Turkey's military, which warned that Erdogan's party sought to erode the country's fiercely guarded secular system, might challenge the results, Snow replied: "I'm not going to get into something like that. There doesn't seem to be any evidence of that."

Erdogan has pledged to uphold secularism and deepen reforms after his Islamist-rooted party won a resounding victory in legislative polls.

It was a moment of glory and vindication for Erdogan, who called the snap election after the secularist opposition in parliament blocked his Justice and Development Party (AKP) from electing one of its own as president.

The crisis in April and May was exacerbated by a menacing military statement and mass anti-government demonstrations accusing the AKP of looking to undermine Turkey's secular system.

AFP

Güncelleme Tarihi: 24 Temmuz 2007, 09:52
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