Turkey: AK Party in turmoil after ministers resign

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Turkey: AK Party in turmoil after ministers resign

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Turkey’s government suffered a shock twin resignation on Christmas Day with the economy and interior ministers both quitting under a cloud of scandal.

Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan and Interior Minister Muammar Guler had both previously offered their resignations on Sunday, and on Tuesday President Abdullah Gul called for light to be shone on a number of corruption allegations.

The ministers became entangled after the arrests of their sons on December 17, along with a number of other suspects accused of taking or organising bribes.

It adds to the pressure on Prime Minister Erdogan ahead of an election year, and it follows a period of unprecedented public unease and protest against him and his AK Party, partly based on perceptions of corruption. The AK Party is now reportedly riven by splits, with a faction led by a US exile actively seeking Erdogan’s downfall.