President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday criticized the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) for moving its 15 lawmakers to another political party "by making them cry".
"You are expelling 15 lawmakers from their home to a place where they did not want to go, by making them cry. Only dictators would do such a thing," Erdogan told a meeting with provincial heads of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party in capital Ankara.
He also rejected criticism of some people who accused the AK Party of imposing a one-man rule.
"If one wants to see a dictator in this country then that person should look at those who forced 15 lawmakers during one night to change their party through political engineering, without showing any reason to its party, public opinion and our nation," Erdogan said.
On Sunday, 15 deputies from the CHP jumped ship to join the newly-formed Good (IYI) Party.
Erdogan said the Turkish opposition has too many people like George Soros in Turkey and these people are not only supported from inside but also supported from abroad.
Soros is one of the richest people in the world. The Hungarian-American business tycoon is known for operating several nongovernmental organizations in many countries.
"We know very well who are these people and from which source they are being fed," the president added.
Erdogan pointed out that while the CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu was defining what he believes should be the characteristics of a president, he was refraining from declaring himself as a presidential candidate.
"You are the most befitting person to that description so why don’t you become a candidate?" he asked.
He added the opposition was not using its power towards bringing its own candidate to govern the country but was instead just trying to show its animosity to him and the ruling AK Party.
Last week, Turkey’s parliament passed a bill calling for early presidential and parliamentary elections on June 24.