Ak Parti Orjinal vector logo
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About Ak Parti Orjinal
The Justice and Development Party (Turkish: Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi), abbreviated JDP in English and AK PARTI or AKP in Turkish,† is a centre-right, social conservative political party in Turkey. It has developed from the tradition of Islamism, but has officially abandoned this ideology in favour of “conservative democracy”. The party is the largest in Turkey, with 327 members of parliament. Its leader, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is Prime Minister, while fellow former party member and PM Abdullah Gül is President. In Turkish, Ak also means white.
Founded in 2001 by members of a number of existing parties, the party won a landslide victory in the 2002 election, winning over two-thirds of parliamentary seats. Abdullah Gül became Prime Minister, but a constitutional amendment in 2003 allowed Erdogan to take his place. In early general elections in 2007, the AKP increased its share of the vote to 47%; its number of seats fell to 341, but Erdogan was returned as PM, while Gül was elected President. In the general elections held on June 12, 2011, the AKP further increased its share of the popular vote to 49.8% and secured 327 parliamentary seats to form a third-consecutive majority government.
The AKP portrays itself as a pro-Western and pro-American party in the Turkish political spectrum that advocates a liberal market economy including Turkish membership in the European Union. In 2005, the party was granted observer membership in the European People’s Party.