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Turkish constitution at stake in general election

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Turkish constitution at stake in general election
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Turkey will go the polls on Sunday with the ruling AK party hoping to secure a large enough majority so they can change the constitution.

It wants to reduce the role of the military in Turkish politics and adopt a presidential system of government.

The AK Party is forecast to pick up 49 percent of the vote, while its closest rival, the Republican People’s Party (CHP) predicted to win 26 percent.

Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the head of the secularist centre-left group, accused Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of becoming increasingly authoritarian and said this would set a bad example for Arab nations which see Turkey as a model.

Analysts at London-based think tank Chatham House say the AK party’s grip on power could undermine democratic reform and hamper media freedoms.

A report by the International Press Institute described Turkey as the world leader in jailing journalists. An estimated 57 reporters are currently behind bars in Turkish jails.