ANKARA, Turkey — Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Thursday he has decided to take the country's ruling party to an extraordinary general convention on May 22, where he will not run for chairmanship.

Davutoglu has long been at odds with the powerful president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, over several political issues, including his half-hearted support for the executive presidential system for which Erdogan has been pushing.

Government officials said the two met May 4. They were unable to iron out their differences, and so Davutoglu decided to step down as prime minister.

Davutoglu was handpicked by Erdogan as chairman of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and prime minister in August 2014. In the last general elections on Nov. 1, Davutoglu's AKP won 49.5 percent of the vote and a mandate to rule until 2019.

Political observers speculate that Erdogan will pick up another party loyalist who will agree to act like a "caretaker prime minister."

They say likely candidates are Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus, Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag, Interior Minister Efkan Ala, Transport Minister Binali Yildirim and Energy Minister Berat Albayrak, Erdogan's son-in-law.

A cabinet reshuffle after May 22 could include Defense Minister Ismet Yilmaz. But government sources say Yilmaz will likely maintain his seat, as he is a close political figure to Erdogan.

Burak Ege Bekdil is a Turkey correspondent for Defense News. He has written for Hurriyet Daily News, and worked as Ankara bureau chief for Dow Jones Newswires and CNBC-e television. He is also a fellow at the Middle East Forum and regularly writes for the Middle East Quarterly and Gatestone Institute.

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