World Bulletin / News Desk
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) is convening its much-anticipated ordinary congress on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. at Ankara Arena sports hall in the Turkish capital.
Thousands of visitors began to flock to the sports hall in the early hours of the day to attend the fourth ordinary congress of the party, which is expected to attract 40,000 people, including hundreds of reporters, delegates and visitors.
The AK Party wants to turn the convention into a major show of solidarity among the party rank and file while trying to lure as many as 80 foreign dignitaries, including Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) leader Massoud Barzani and Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.,
Yemeni Nobel leace laureate Tawakul Karman and the mother and sister of Mohamed Bouazizi, the Tunisian street vendor who triggered the Arab Spring when he set himself on fire on Dec. 17, 2010, are also expected to attend Sunday's congress as guests of honor.
The congress will be translated into English, French, Russian, Portuguese and Arabic for foreign participants and it will be aired live outside the sports hall on a large television screen for those who cannot get in. Turkish TV channels will also broadcast the congress live for Turkish citizens.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, leader of the AK Party, earlier said he would announce a shake-up of his party at Sunday's meeting. He plans to designate officials to steer the party to local, presidential and general elections in the next three years and outline policy goals leading up to the country's centenary in 2023.
Erdoğan will run for the party leadership for the last time because party guidelines bar members from holding posts for more than three consecutive terms. But Erdoğan is widely expected to run for presidential elections in 2014 when, observers say, he could hand over the party's reins to a trusted confidant and retain some control over both the running of the party and government.
The prime minister has said he favors changing Turkey's political system to a strong presidential one similar to that of the United States, although opposition leaders have balked at the idea of an all-powerful presidency.
The AK Party swept to power in 2002 on the heels of an economic crisis and went on to win elections by commanding margins in 2007 and 2011. It maintained the country's system of secular politics, but undercut the political power of the military, which had staged three coups since the 1960s and forced an Islamist government out of office in 1997.
"Do not give credit to other than the official statement," Basci told reporters after his discord with PM Erdogan.
The Asian region has ever-increasing share in world economy, Malaysia's prime minister said ahead of the FTA signing.
Greek jets locked onto Turkish jets as they flew in international air space over the Aegean Sea.
Turkey has promised to help Crimean Tatars maintain their cultural and linguistic identity in the hope that their language will officially be recognized.
Slowing economies and higher interest rates will drag banks in emerging markets, says ratings agency.
A Greek court refused Turkey's demand to extradite illegal organization member Huseyin Fevzi Tekin, who was detained in his home with ammunition in Athens.
Kurdish politician and writer Yasar Kaya, founder of the Kurdish nationalist Democracy Party, returns from 21-year exile in Germany to Turkey.
Thursday's newspapers mainly cover President Abdullah Gul’s comments on Turkey's August presidential election, the ruling AK Party’s meeting on that contest, high-level talks between Twitter and Ankar, plus a ferry disaster in South Korea.
Turkey's main opposition party called for a parliamentary inquiry to look into imprisonment of some 300 members of Turkish Armed Forces.
Energy cooperation between Turkey and Iraq’s Kurdish regional government is stated clearly to both the U.S. and the government in Iraq, says Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The Turkish government sponsors a number of charity and development projects in the Gaza Strip.
Ankara's current efforts towards streamlining trade are aimed at fully widening scope of business with Iran, says Turkish Development Minister at Tehran forum.
The massacre of Muslims in the Central African Republic has been compared to the genocides in Bosnia and Rwanda.
The 'Invest in Italy' conference in Istanbul heard of a huge discrepancy in Turkish-Italian investment.
The boat is said to have been illegally transporting migrants to Greek islands.
Turkey, which last year was ranked 16th, skipped ahead of Canada, which has had to cut back its military spending.