Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu is set to meet Turkey's pro-secular party leader to decide whether their ideologically opposed parties can form a coalition government. Prospects looked dim, however, raising expectations for new elections.

Davutoglu's ruling party lost its majority in elections in June, forcing it to seek a coalition alliance. Elections will be called if no government is formed by end of next week.

The talks Thursday come amid a sharp surge of violence, mounting pressure on Davutoglu to build a strong coalition government. Turkey is also more actively engaged in a U.S.-led campaign against the Islamic State group.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who founded the ruling party and remains influential, is reported to favor new elections in the hopes that the party can win back its majority.