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Erdoğan signals major shakeup in AKP before preparations launched for 2019 election

GIRESN, TURKEY - AUGUST 09: President of Turkey and Chairman of the Justice and Development Party (AK Party), Recep Tayyip Erdogan greets the crowd during the opening of Sarayburnu Mosque at the Bulancak district of Giresun, Turkey on August 09, 2017. AFP

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan hinted at a major reorganization in the administration of his Justice and Development Party (AKP) before the 2019 presidential election, which will officially change Turkey’s system of governance from a parliamentary to a presidential system.

Speaking during a meeting in Giresun province on Wednesday, Erdoğan said, “There are some AKP members who have gotten tired and lost their way during the 16 years of the party’s rule.”

Underlining that the AKP’s most important attribute is the ability to renew itself, Erdoğan said the party would not be able to succeed in 2019 if those members still remain in the party.

Starting with our organizations, we are determined to bring serious rejuvenation and change to the party,” he said.

Erdoğan also said he did not want certain groups to infiltrate the party, in a veiled reference to the Gülen movement, which he accuses of being behind a failed coup last year.

Erdoğan retook the party’s leadership at an extraordinary congress on May 21, 2017 after a referendum in April 16 permitted him to serve as a president with links to a political party.

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