Turkish President Erdogan announces early elections despite criticism over earthquake response
Turkish President Erdogan has announced early parliamentary and presidential elections for May 14, a month earlier than planned, despite criticism over his government's response to the recent earthquake that killed over 46,000 people in Turkey and nearly 6,000 people in northern Syria. The elections could be the most significant in the country's modern history by determining if Turkey will take a more democratic path or continue on Erdogan's increasingly authoritarian course. Erdogan has ruled over Turkey since 2003, first as prime minister and then as president since 2014. The country is struggling with a troubled economy, soaring inflation, and the aftermath of the earthquake that left hundreds of thousands of people across 11 Turkish provinces sheltering in tents or temporary accommodation.