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Arabs Battling Regimes See Erdogan’s Muslim Democracy as Model

Arabs seeking a model for post-autocratic governments are looking for inspiration in Turkey, where Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s brand of Islamic democracy has helped make him the region’s most popular leader.

Erdogan has been elected twice, presided over an economic boom that’s tripled average incomes while Egypt’s remained stagnant, and shifted Turkey’s foreign policy away from Western tutelage while keeping its status as a U.S. military ally and European Union candidate. His popularity has spread to the Arab world, where he was named the most favored leader last year in a survey by Zogby International and the University of Maryland.