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Turkey's Erdogan Calls Early Election to End Power Deadlock

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan calls an election for November 1, after no group won a majority from voters in June.

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Friday that the nation will hold an early election on Nov. 1, after no group won a majority from voters in June and Erdogan's party was unable to find a coalition partner.

Erdogan said he will meet with the parliament speaker on Monday, the day after the deadline for forming a new government, to complete the formalities. "After that, we will take our country to early elections," he said.

The widely expected announcement comes days after Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu abandoned efforts to build a coalition government, following the failure of talks with the leaders of two smaller parties. The ruling party lost its parliamentary majority in June for the first time since it came to power in 2002, forcing it to seek a coalition alliance.

The June result was a slap on Erdogan's ambitions to increase the powers of the largely ceremonial presidency. He is believed to have favored a new election, and Turkey's main opposition leader has accused the president of obstructing the coalition-building efforts — a charge Erdogan denies.

The new election will take place amid escalating violence between Turkey's security forces and Kurdish rebels, and as Turkey is taking a more active role in the U.S.-led campaign against the Islamic State extremists.

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Erdogan appears to be betting that a new ballot could revive the fortunes of the Islamic-rooted party which he founded and led for more than a decade, and thus put him back on course to reshape Turkey's democracy into a system where the president would have executive powers. A coalition government would also have limited his ability to influence the government.