Turkish prime minister to stand down

Ahmet Davutoglu says he will not stand in fresh leadership election in two weeks

Turkish prime minister to stand down


Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party will hold a fresh leadership election later this month, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Thursday.

Davutoglu announced he would not stand in the vote for the party chairmanship, a role he currently holds alongside the premiership, meaning he will also be replaced as prime minister.

Speaking at a news conference in Ankara following a meeting of the party’s Central Executive Board (MYK), Davutoglu said the extraordinary congress would be held May 22.

“I do not intend to be a candidate in an absence of consensus,” he said.

Davutoglu said he would continue to carry out his duties as a parliamentary deputy for Konya in central Anatolia after he leaves office.

In Washington, the White House lauded the Turkish premier as "a good partner with the United States", adding that "we've appreciated his leadership.

"I do not anticipate that this is going to have any impact on the ability of the United States and Turkey to work together," spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters. 

The AK Party held its last extraordinary congress in August 2014, when Davutoglu replaced Recep Tayyip Erdogan as prime minister after Erdogan became president.

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