Meral Aksener, a former Turkish interior minister and deputy parliament speaker, addresses her party's first meeting in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017. Hoping to challenge President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in elections set for 2019, Aksener founded the center-right "Iyi Parti," or "Good Party," in Ankara with a group of legislators who broke away from Turkey's nationalist party this year. (Depo Photos via AP)

A former Turkish interior minister and deputy parliament speaker has formed a new party hoping to challenge President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in elections set for 2019.
The 61-year-old Meral Aksener founded the center-right “Iyi Parti,” or “Good Party,” in Ankara on Wednesday with a group of legislators who broke away from Turkey’s nationalist party this year. They were angered by the support that party gave Erdogan in a referendum that increases the president’s powers.
Aksener is Turkey’s first woman interior minister and served in that post between 1996 and 1997 until the government, a conservative-Islamist coalition, was ousted under military pressure.
At a ceremony marking the party’s founding, Aksener suggested that she could run against Erdogan in the presidential elections.

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