Abdülkadir Selvi, a pro-government journalist from the Hürriyet daily, has claimed that former Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, who has recently come to public attention with his criticism of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), could soon be expelled from the party.
In his column in Hürriyet on Monday Selvi said President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who is also the leader of the AKP, met with party officials on Friday and Saturday and discussed among other things the expulsion of Davutoğlu from the AKP.
Davutoğlu, who served in top positions of AKP governments until he was forced to step down as prime minister in 2016, last week voiced concern about a controversial decision by Turkey’s election authority to cancel the results of a mayoral election in İstanbul, which was won by an opposition candidate.
Former President Abdullah Gül, who was also a top AKP figure, also criticized the election authority’s decision to nullify the results of the İstanbul vote.
According to Selvi, Erdoğan claimed Gül was not an AKP co-founder and that he chose not to become a member of the party after his term as president expired. As for Davutoğlu, Erdoğan reportedly said the expulsion process could begin soon, after the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, around early June.
Earlier this month, in his first major public challenge to President Erdoğan since leaving office, Davutoğlu also slammed the AKP’s economic policies, media restrictions and the damage he said it had done to the separation of powers and to Turkey’s institutions.