Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wins second term in a landslide victory

01 July, 2018, 19:46 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a press conference at the Presidential Complex in Ankara

Ince had previously told supporters he would spend the night at the headquarters of Turkey's electoral commission to ensure the votes were properly counted.

Mr Erdogan earlier said the governing alliance of his AK Party had secured a majority in parliament.

The main opposition CHP is on 23%.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has become one of the first world leaders to congratulate Recep Tayyip Erdogan on being re-elected as Turkey's president.

The victor of Sunday's presidential contest will acquire sweeping new executive powers under a constitutional overhaul backed by Erdogan and endorsed previous year by a narrow majority of Turks in a referendum.

Ince on Monday said he accepted the results and would call Erdogan to congratulate him.

The 64-year-old also declared victory for the People's Alliance, a bloc between his ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), saying they had won a parliamentary majority in the legislative elections, also held on Sunday.

"This sets the stage for speeding up reforms", Turkish deputy prime minister Mehmet Simsek tweeted of the results. It reached 4.587 lira to the dollar at 12:17 a.m. (2117 GMT) before easing slightly.

State media reports put Mr Erdogan on 53% with 99% of votes counted, and his closest rival Muharrem Ince on 31%.

Polls have opened for Turkey's high-stakes presidential and parliamentary elections, which could consolidate President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's hold on power.

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Opposition parties and NGOs had deployed up to half a million monitors at ballot boxes to try to prevent possible electoral fraud.

Demirhan says, "According to our surveys at the beginning of the election campaign, HDP would have lost about eight percentage points of its vote in the region in comparison with the November 2015 elections".

Critics say that campaigning took place under deeply unfair conditions, with Mr. Erdoğan dominating media coverage in the run-up to the vote, and his opponents getting little air time.

He was followed by Selahattin Demirtas, of the pro-Kurdish Democratic People's Party (HDP), at 8.1 percent and debutante right-wing IYI (Good) Party's Meral Aksener, at 7.4 percent.

Voter turnout was high, at almost 87%.

"The risks stemming from the election are more likely to materialize over the longer term-in particular, the risk that an Erdogan-AKP government pursues much looser fiscal and monetary policy". The newly empowered president has unnerved investors with his unorthodox calls for lower interest rates despite high inflation.

Erdoğan has been in power since 2002 but he faced his strongest challenge in Ince's centre-left CHP in this election.

Under constitutional amendments approved after a controversial 2017 referendum, Turkey is making a transition from a parliamentary system to a presidential one - giving the next president expanded powers, abolishing the prime minister's post, and eliminating numerous checks and balances created to help parliament protect against the misuse of presidential powers.The changes will take effect after the elections.

He now has the power to issue decrees that circumvent parliament though he says he will give up this measure.

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