Turkey's media consider Erdogan's next move
- 11 August 2014
- From the section Europe
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's promise to seek national unity after winning the first direct Turkish presidential election has prompted media commentators to ask whether or not he can overcome national divisions.
"President of the whole nation"
Mr Erdogan's win and victory speech led all television bulletins, with some pro-government and private channels - Kanal 24, TRT Haber and CNN Turk - using his campaign symbol of a large star surrounded by smaller ones as their presenter backdrop.
CNN Turk devoted much of its main morning bulletin to Mr Erdogan's win, with special reports on preparations for his victory speech and celebrations in cities across Turkey. State-run TRT Haber replaced its morning bulletin with a studio discussion of the win.
Opposition Halk TV broadcast a markedly more critical panel discussion in its main bulletin, with guests asking how Mr Erdogan could hope to be "president of the whole nation" after giving his victory address from the balcony of his party headquarters.
All channels reported opposition candidates' reactions, although CNN Turk did not turn to them until 20 minutes into its main bulletin.
Several channels registered a fall in support for the opposition since the March local elections, and reported main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) spokesman Haluk Koc blaming this on a poor turnout by opposition supporters. That point was also made by the nationalist newspaper Ortadogu, which said a third of voters stayed away to enjoy the August holiday.
Almost all newspapers splash photos of Mr Erdogan either casting his vote or speaking from the balcony on their front pages, but the comment within is far more varied.
Pro-government papers endorse the prime minister's ambition of increasing the powers of the presidency, with the more Islamist-inclined dailies adding a note of religious exultation.
Sabah calls Mr Erdogan the "man of the nation", Star says he's the "president of the nation", and Aksam goes further in promoting a "revolution for the nation" and the "birth of a new Turkey" - the Erdogan campaign slogan.
Haber Turk referred to his "historic victory", with Aksam recalling that his Justice and Development Party has won every election for the past 12 years.
The liberal Islamic Yeni Safak greets a "New Turkey" that could end the "pause" in Middle Eastern history caused by the abolition of the Ottoman Empire in 1923.
Opposition and non-partisan papers are more sceptical of Mr Erdogan's chances of remaking Turkey, saying he lacks a convincing mandate.
The firmly anti-Erdogan Cumhuriyet notes on its front page that he failed to win enough votes to change the powers of the presidency.
It devotes considerable attention to the "race" for the premiership among Mr Erdogan's colleagues, although the similarly-inclined Sozcu thinks the new president will appoint a loyal follower and continue to run the government himself.
Newspapers associated with Islamic thinker Fethullah Gulen, a former mentor and now exiled enemy of Mr Erdogan's, report the election win in fairly neutral terms, although Zaman puts an editorial on its front page saying the vote will change nothing unless the government "abandons arrogance and oppression".
Some papers take a harsher line. Left-wing Birgun's headline says that nearly half of voters do not see Mr Erdogan as "legitimate", while the nationalist Aydinlik declares bluntly: "We will take you down from there."
Mr Erdogan's supporters on social media are jubilant, and the hashtags #ErdoganMakingHistory (erdogan tarih yaziyor ) and #NationsPrayersWithErdogan are the top Twitter trends.
"The old Turkey is left behind, today is the first day, we have woken up to a new Turkey," user Saglam Irade says, while writer Markar Esayan posts: "New Turkey, peace, process and consistent foreign policy have won, but more importantly the Turkish public's will has won."
Some of Mr Erdogan's critics turn on the voters. "Our dear public has determined their future with their own votes and taken responsibility for their future. They have no right to complain now," tweets journalist Oktay Eksi.
Others seek consolation in his narrow win. "He won, but has his dream of changing the constitution shattered?" asks columnist Ugur Gurses.
Satirical website Zaytung posted a picture of two Erdogans sitting face to face, captioned "Prime Minister Erdogan congratulates President Erdogan", and hundreds have retweeted it to mock the new president's pre-eminence in politics.