Turkey's New Era: Turkish President Erdogan takes oath of office

Buhari congratulates Turkish leader Erdogan

Recep Tayyip Erdogan was sworn in as the country's first executive president.

The new cabinet, due to be announced at 1800 GMT, is expected to have a different look, especially after Erdogan said the government would include non-AKP figures.

Erdogan has described high interest rates as "the mother and father of all evil", and said in May he would expect to wield greater economic control after the election. For some, it is the coronation of a new Turkey.

"We are leaving behind the system that has in the past cost our country a heavy price in political and economic chaos", he said.

On the eve of Monday's inauguration authorities dismissed more than 18,000 state employees - a lot of them from the police and army - in what the government said would be the final decree under emergency rule imposed following a failed 2016 coup. Armed forces chief of staff Hulusi Akar was named defence minister.

Meanwhile Mevlut Cavusoglu remains in his post as foreign minister.

Erdogan, 64, says a powerful executive presidency is vital to drive economic growth, ensure security after a failed 2016 military coup and safeguard Turkey from war across its southern border in Syria and Iraq.

"We are embarking on this road by using this opportunity as best we can for a strong parliament, strong government and strong Turkey", he said.

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Turkey-based news channel TRT World reported that "22 heads of state and 28 prime ministers and speakers of parliament [were] scheduled to attend the ceremony" and over 10,000 people were anticipated to attend.

His supporters see them as just reward for a leader who has put Islamist values at the core of public life, championed the pious working classes and built airports, hospitals and schools.

After taking his oath, Erdogan visited the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey.

He will have sweeping new powers, including over the judiciary and the ability to rule by decree. Before Erdogan, the role of the Turkish president was largely ceremonial.

Those changes concentrate more power in the hands of the president. "In other words, Turkey will be an institutionalized autocracy".

Under the new system, Erdogan leads the state's executive branch and has the right to appoint and dismiss vice-presidents, a newly introduced position, as well as ministers, high-level officials and senior judges - without parliamentary approval. However, major Western leaders would not be in attendance, according to Reuters. Erdoĝan has repeatedly clashed with strategic allies such as the U.S. and the European Union in recent years over the war in Syria, Turkey's accession to the EU, human rights abuses by Ankara, Europe's failure to support Turkey during the coup attempt, and rising Islamophobia in Europe.

Following news of the appointment of Mr Erdogan's son-in-law, the Turkish lira lost more than 2% of its value.

Turkey also faces a widening current account deficit making it reliant on weak foreign investment to plug the gap. The lira, which gained more than 1 percent earlier on Monday to 4.51 against the dollar, briefly fell back sharply after a government decree removed a clause stipulating a five-year term for the central bank governor.



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