Yilmaz vows to stay in government

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The Independent Online
Diyarbakir, Turkey (Reuter) - The Turkish Prime Minister, Mesut Yilmaz, said yesterday that his conservative government would remain in power, despite losing the support of coalition partner Tansu Ciller.

"We will continue to be the government ... until a new government formula becomes clear," Mr Yilmaz said.

He challenged the Islamic Welfare Party to carry out a threat to remove him from power. "I am not going to resign," he insisted. "Let all the ministers resign or let them table a censure motion."

The premier made the comments, his first in public on the deepening political crisis, shortly before a cabinet meeting in Diyarbakir, the mainly Kurdish south-east's administrative capital, on possible solutions to the 12- year-old armed Kurdish rebellion.