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Turkey’s Erdogan appoints new justice minister and statistician

FILE PHOTO: Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan (R) is pictured with Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag during the International Istanbul Law Congress in Istanbul, Turkey, October 17, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Sezer/File Photo

According to the Official Gazette, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan selected Bekir Bozdag, a member of his ruling AK Party, as Justice Minister and removed TUIK’s top statistician. Former Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul had resigned, according to the report, but no reason was given.

The news: Bozdag, 56, served as Erdogan’s justice minister from 2013 to 2015 and again from 2015 to 2017, before becoming deputy prime minister until 2018, when the position was eliminated as part of constitutional revisions giving Erdogan broad executive powers.

  • “I thank our President Mr Tayyip Erdogan for entrusting the post of Justice Minister to me… May God help us,” Bozdag said on Twitter on Saturday.
  • Erdogan also replaced TUIK chairman Sait Erdal Dincer, who had been appointed less than a year before, with Erhan Cetinkaya, according to the Gazette.
  • TUIK has been accused by opposition parties and sceptics of tampering with official figures, such as inflation, for political gain. Although the institute disregarded the claim, experts have begun working on alternate inflation calculations.
  • Turkey, which is mired in a currency crisis, has been plagued by rising inflation, which is predicted to touch a near 20-year high of roughly 47 per cent in January, according to a poll released on Friday.
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