Turkey's ruling party has nominated Recep Tayyip Erdogan to run in Turkey's first directly elected presidential race in August.

The AK party announced the prime minister's candidacy on Tuesday before thousands of cheering supporters.

Erdogan, in power since 2003, is barred by party rules from running as prime minister again. His candidacy for president could put him at Turkey's helm for five more years.

The two-round elections are set for August 10 and 24. President Abdullah Gul's term ends August 28.

The Turkish presidency is a largely symbolic post, and Erdogan has said he favours a system that gives the president more powers. 

He failed to muster sufficient support to make constitutional changes for an all-powerful president but has suggested that if elected, he would fully use latent presidential powers, including the right to call Cabinet meetings, so that he can rule Turkey with as much authority as he has enjoyed as prime minister.

Source: AP