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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Erbakan to Return

ANKARA, Turkey -- Turkey's staunchly secularist Prime Minister, Bulent Ecevit, has given his political rivals a boost this week that will also put the country's democracy on a slightly firmer footing.

In what was widely seen as a deal to win the support of the Islamic opposition for International Monetary Fund demanded reforms, Ecevit's government Thursday cleared the way for former Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan to return to the parliament from which he was banned in 1998.

Thursday's voting also raised the standard of proof required for the constitutional court to outlaw a political party, a threat hanging over Erbakan's latest political vehicle, the Islam-based Virtue Party.