Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Thursday announced that he will resign from his post, opening up the possibility for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to solidify and consolidate his power, and placing a question mark on a possible reconciliation between Turkey and Israel.
“We thought that we would have a four-year relationship,” Davutoglu said. “That this lasted shorter is, rest assured, not of my choosing, but because of necessities that have emerged.”
The upheaval in Turkey’s government seems to be the result of a failure of the two highest ranking leaders to resolve ongoing disputes, which has culminated in intense “crisis talks” on Wednesday. Haaretz reported that Davutoglu has not strongly supported the presidential system that Erdogan wants in order to strengthen his power in lieu of the current parliamentary system. Erdogan has also opposed resuming reconciliation talks with Kurdish rebels in Turkey, while the prime minister was open to the idea if the rebels were willing to withdraw fighters from Turkey.
Davutoglu, who was known as Erdogan’s more moderate counterpart, recently also announced that the reconciliation process with Israel had advanced greatly, saying an agreement would be reached if Israel agreed to resolve the electricity and water crises in Gaza. With his exit the future of the reconciliation is not clear. The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) will hold an emergency convention later this month to choose a new party leader who will replace the prime minister, likely someone loyal to Erdogan who wants to centralize government control.