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Zaman, Nov. 2, 2015

"Alone in power," writes Turkish daily Zaman on its Monday front page, after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) swept back to victory in Sunday's parliamentary elections.

In a defeat for political moderates, secularists and Kurds, the AKP will return to governing the country alone after winning 49.4% of the vote, enough to secure an outright parliamentary majority. It will still need the support of representatives from other parties to execute Erdogan's plans for a new constitution, which would replace the country's parliamentary system with a presidential one.

According to Zaman, local media are reporting allegations of vote rigging.

The voting was marred by clashes between police and supporters of the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP), whose surprising rise in June's election had prevented the AKP from obtaining a majority. The campaign itself was also marked by widespread violence and terrorist attacks, as well as police raids on opposition TV stations days before the vote.

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Coronavirus

Will China's Zero COVID Ever End?

Too much has been put in to the state-sponsored truth that minimal spread of the virus is the at-all-cost objective. But if the Chinese economy continues to suffer, Xi Jinping may have no choice but to second guess himself.

COVID testing in Guiyang, China

Cfoto/DDP via ZUMA
Deng Yuwen

The tragic bus accident in Guiyang last month — in which 27 people being sent to quarantine were killed — was one of the worst examples of collateral damage since the COVID-19 pandemic began in China nearly three years ago. While the crash can ultimately be traced back to bad government policy, the local authorities did not register it as a Zero COVID related casualty. It was, for them, a simple traffic accident.

The officials in the southern Chinese province of Guizhou, of course, had no alternative. Drawing a link between the deadly crash and the strict policy of Zero COVID, touted by President Xi Jinping, would have revealed the absurdity of the government's choices.

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