A man counts his Turkish liras as he leaves from a currency shop in central Istanbul Wednesday, July, 20, 2016. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
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Days after last year's failed coup, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his allies set to work creating a wealth fund to safeguard what is now about $200 billion of assets, including cash, property and shares.But the main thing the fund has done so far is trigger a power struggle between two camps, one based around Erdogan and the other around an increasingly assertive prime minister, Binali Yildirim, who was installed as a caretaker last year to oversee the transition to a vastly expanded presidency.While there's no doubt Erdogan reigns supreme, the emergence of a second pillar of AKP power shows his rule isn't as absolute as it may appear, according to Etyen Mahcupyan, a former adviser to Yildirim's predecessor, Ahmet Davutoglu, who disagreed with the president over the premier's role and quit after 21 months, in May 2016 .Spokespeople for Erdogan and Yildirim both declined to comment on the outlook for the fund, as did Bostan, the chief executive officer.Erdogan, whose approval rating is hovering around 50 percent, can call elections early, though in 15 years in power his party never has.As far as the fund goes, Yildirim has been sitting on the development plan Bostan submitted five months ago.
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