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The BBC's Chris Morris
reports from Istanbul with the latest
 real 28k

Friday, 22 June, 2001, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
Turkey bans Islamic party
Breaking News
Turkey's Constitutional Court has ordered the closure of the main opposition party, the Islamic Virtue party.

The Constitutional Court ordered Virtue closed on the grounds that it was a focal point for anti-secular activities.

Turkey is a staunchly secular state.

There was no immediate reaction from Virtue leader Recai Kutan.

The closure verdict could threaten the balances within Turkey's ruling three-party coalition, as it seeks to restore stability after a serious economic crisis.

The government's crisis recovery plan, backed with $15.7bn in loans pledged by the International Monetary Fund, has already strained relations between the coalition partners.

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