Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's efforts to create a coalition alliance with the country's pro-secular party have failed, pushing the country closer towards new elections.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said a fresh election now appeared to be the only option after last-ditch negotiations between his Islamist-rooted AK Party and the main opposition CHP yielded no deal.
He urged parliament to call for a new vote and said he would prefer it was held as soon as possible.
"An understanding has emerged that there are no grounds right now to form a government partnership," Davutoglu told a news conference after meeting CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was reported to favour renewed autumn elections, in the hope that the ruling party, which he founded, can regain the parliamentary majority it lost in elections in June.
On Wednesday, Erdogan spoke of the need for a strong rule and said Davutoglu "would not commit suicide" if no coalition could be formed.
'Historic opportunity missed'
Delegates from the AK Party and Kilicdaroglu's secular party have held a series of meetings in search of a partnership despite their deep-seated rivalries.
The two sides said they reached consensus on a number of issues but failed to resolve differences on main issues, including foreign policy, education and the president's role.
Kilicdaroglu also suggested that Davutoglu never sought a true coalition alliance, but was looking for a short-lived government that would take the country to early elections.
"We have not received a coalition proposal, what we were proposed was a [caretaker] government for elections," the AP news agency quoted Kilicdaroglu as saying. "A historic opportunity was missed."
The development pushes Turkey into political uncertainty at a time when it is faced with a sharp surge of violence and the country is engaged in major military offensive against fighters of the Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK).
Source: Al Jazeera and agencies