Leaders of the governing Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and the main opposition, Republican People’s Party (CHP) met on Monday to hold the first round of talks to form a possible coalition government.
Following the meeting, deputy chairman of the CHP Haluk Koc announced that AK Party leader PM Ahmet Davutoglu and CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu will hold further discussions this week, either on Thursday or Friday since the first round of coalition talks did not achieve any final outcome.
“The two chairmen will meet again either on Thursday or Friday to make detailed assessments in the light of today's meeting,” said CHP’s Koc.
Monday’s talks lasted over four hours, and took place at the prime ministry in Ankara.
“The two leaders made various evaluations in the broadest spectrum in a move not to leave the country without a government,” said Omer Celik, AK Party’s minister of culture, who was also present at the meeting.
“Nothing is agreed [upon] unless everything is agreed,” he added.
Monday’s meeting was the last of a first round of talks that began on July 24, to discuss a possible establishment of a coalition government between the governing AK Party and the main opposition CHP.
Previous talks, since late July have lasted for 35 hours during five different discussion sessions.
If a coalition government is not formed until the upcoming deadline of Aug. 23, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan or the country’s parliament could decide to hold early elections.
In case of early elections, the voting should take place in the first Sunday 90 days after the deadline, which would most likely be in November.
The Supreme Election Board (YSK) could reduce the 90-day period to as much as half, bringing the elections to a much earlier date.
Since 2002, Turkey was governed by the AK Party who managed to secure parliamentary majority in 2002, 2007 and 2011 national elections. However, the party lost the ability to form a single party government when it failed to get a majority in parliament in June 7, 2015 elections.
It was almost 16 years ago, when Turkey was last compelled to form a coalition government in 1999, between the Democratic Left Party (DSP), National Movement Party (MHP) and Motherland Party (ANAP).