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10:15 25 April
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Turkish opposition party takes referendum row to Ankara court


Turkey’s main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) has approached the Council of State -- the highest administrative court in Turkey -- in Ankara amid a row over Sunday’s constitutional referendum, a lawyer from the party said on Friday, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency.

 

Speaking to reporters in Ankara, Atilla Kart said the party had urged the court to suspend the official referendum results set to be declared by the Supreme Election Board, also known as the YSK, until the legal process ends.

 

The CHP has led the criticism of the April 16 referendum result, particularly the YSK's decision to include ballot papers unverified by local electoral boards in the count.

 

It submitted a petition to cancel the election result; however, the election board on Wednesday rejected all appeals against the referendum by the CHP, the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) and the Patriotic Party (Vatan Partisi).

 

“I am talking about an administrative act which is null and void. We still believe that there are jurisdictions that will express and determine the main facts in Turkey.

 

“We believe that those judicial authorities are responsible for Turkey’s democracy and peace. This is very critical and important,” Kart said.

 

Voters went to the polls on Sunday to decide whether to approve changes to the country’s constitution, which would usher in an executive presidency.

 

Unofficial results show the Yes campaign won with 51.41 percent, while the No vote stood at 48.59 percent. Voter turnout was 85.46 percent.

 

The official results are due to be released at the beginning of May.

 

The CHP lawyer said the YSK should not finalize the election result until the party's application at the Council of State concludes.

 

He added the CHP intended to employ all legal ways to challenge the result, including Turkey’s Constitutional Court as well as European Court of Human Rights.

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