Turkey’s Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has been chosen as the ruling AK Party’s presidential candidate. The party has a big majority in parliament which elects the head the state. A series of votes starts on Friday. There had been speculation Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan would stand. But he had come under pressure from Turkey’s secular establishment not to do so, because of his Islamist past.
The premier confirmed the candidacy of a man he called “our dear friend”. The main opposition says it will boycott the parliamentary vote because of a lack of consultation. However the move is not expected to stop the governing party from getting its man elected.