The chairman of the State Duma’s international affairs committee, Leonid Slutsky, believes that the outcome of the Turkish referendum, in which the supporters of the presidential type of government gained the upper hand with a slight majority, will cause no harm to relations of partnership with Russia.
“Relations with Turkey are no easy ones, but they are unequivocally keynoted by partnership in the economy and politics. There are no reasons to doubt their future in the wake of the just-held referendum,” Slutsky told the media on Monday. He is certain that Russia and Turkey will maintain a constructive dialog in Astana over a settlement in Syria.
Slutsky said Russia respected the right of the Turkish people to determine their constitutional system.
“This is an internal affair of Turkey,” he said, adding that the narrow margin of victory achieved in the referendum by the supporters of presidential rule demonstrated the wide variety of opinions in Turkish society.
“Support for the opposition from a number of European capitals indicates that the West finds the Turkish president’s growing powers worrisome,” Slutsky said.
In last Sunday’s referendum the supporters of amendments to the constitution gained the upper hand. According to early returns available after the counting of 99.9% of the votes 51.3% percent came out for changes to the country’s fundamental law. The turnout reached 86%. The constitutional changes will replace the country’s parliamentary type of government with a presidential one. The prime minister’s post is to be abolished. The president will gain the right to appoint the vice-president, government ministers and some members of the Board of Judges and Prosecutors.