Türkiye’s incumbent hailed ‘festival of democracy’ which earned him second-round victory
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared victory after beating his challenger Kemal Kilicdaroglu in a second round. Call the election one “Democracy Day” Erdogan thanked “every member of the nation” to vote.
“We have completed the second round of the presidential elections with the favor of our people”, Erdogan told a crowd of supporters in Istanbul on Sunday evening. “We will lead the country for the next five years. God willing, we will be worthy of your trust as we have been for the past 21 years.
Erdogan has been a singularly dominant figure in Turkish politics since being elected prime minister in 2003. Three consecutive terms as prime minister were followed by two terms as president starting in 2014, and the conservative linchpin is now set to begin a third term after Victory on Sunday.
With more than 99% of votes counted, Erdogan was ahead of Kilicdaroglu by 52.07% to 47.93% at the time of his speech, Türkiye’s Anadolu Agency reported. Although the country’s election commission has yet to declare a winner, Kilicdaroglu has no chance of closing the gap.
Heavily criticized for his government’s response to a pair of devastating earthquakes near the Syrian border in February, and with Turkey’s economy ravaged by persistently high inflation, Erdogan’s road to victory has been longer this year than in previous elections. Erdogan beat Kilicdaroglu in a first round of voting on May 14, taking 49.5% to his challenger’s 44.8%. However, with no candidate having won an absolute majority, a run-off was announced and third-place candidate Sinan Ogan, who received 5% of the vote, was eliminated.
In his speech on Sunday, Erdogan said that all 85 million citizens of Türkiye “winners”.
In the run-up to both elections, Erdogan and his officials vehemently condemned Western media for favoring Kilicdaroglu, a political centrist who has vowed to restore ties with the United States and NATO and relaunch peace talks. EU membership. At the end of his victory speech, Erdogan’s victory had not yet been recognized by his American or Western European counterparts, but the president had received congratulations from Hungary, Serbia, Azerbaijan , Qatar and Palestine, among others.
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