Leaders of Turkey's six opposition parties have vowed to return parliamentary democracy and abandon the presidential system introduced by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan three years ago, AP reports.
At a ceremony in Ankara, party leaders signed a 48-page declaration confirming their determination to introduce a "strengthened parliamentary system" if they win elections scheduled for June 2023.
Erdogan, who has been in power since 2003 — first as prime minister and since 2014 as president — introduced a presidential system in 2018 that abolished the post of prime minister and concentrated most of the powers in the hands of the president. Prior to this, the presidency was largely ceremonial.
The opposition blames Turkey's woes, including economic decline and erosion of rights and freedoms, on Erdogan's system, which they say amounts to one-man rule.
The new system, proposed by six opposition parties, would revive the prime minister's office and restore the president's largely symbolic powers, party officials said during the ceremony. It provides for a greater separation of powers, including a stronger legislative and oversight role for parliament, as well as an independent judiciary. It also promises transparency and empowerment, including women's rights.