Located at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, and the Caucasus, Turkey is considered a multiregional power. It shares borders with Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Iran to the east; Iraq and Syria to the south; and Greece and Bulgaria to the west. Ankara, in central Anatolia, is the capital city. Turkey’s population was nearly 80 million as of July 2012. The current constitution identifies the country as a democratic, secular, and social state governed by the rule of law. The Turkish political system is based on parliamentary democracy. The executive power is vested in the government. Parliamentary elections are held every 4 years. Under recent constitutional amendments, the president will be for the first time directly elected every 5 years starting in 2014. The ...

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