Turkey Elections: Erdogan Wins Second Term

Turkey Elections: Erdogan Wins Second Term

Turkey Elections: Erdogan Wins Second Term

Election board chief Sadi Guven said officials were taking "administrative and judicial initiatives" over reported security problems as people voted in Sanliurfa, in the country's southeast, according to Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won Turkey's landmark election, the country's electoral commission said, ushering in a new system granting the president sweeping new powers which critics say will cement what they call a one-man rule.

Speaking early Monday, Supreme Election Council head Sadi Guven said 97.7 percent of votes had been counted and declared Erdogan the victor.

Moments before Erdogan claimed victory, spokesman Bulent Tezcan of the Republican People's Party slammed Turkey's state-run news agency for reporting that Erdogan has won enough to avoid a run-off and accused the agency of distorting the results.

There are ongoing debates about whether the election was "free", amid reports of ballot stuffing and vote rigging.

On the call Putin and Erdogan confirmed their interest in "deepening partnership ties between the two countries", the Kremlin said, singling out priority projects such as the TurkStream gas pipeline and Turkey's first nuclear power plant being built by Moscow.

The candidate of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party Selahattin Demirtas came third on 8.4%, a position all the more remarkable given he has been jailed on charges of links to Kurdish militants since November 2016.

The HDP easily broke through the 10 percent minimum vote threshold to pick up 67 seats, sparking wild celebrations in its Kurdish-majority stronghold of Diyarbakir.

Also Monday, Kosovo President Hashim Thaci congratulated Erdogan in a tweet, adding: "Looking forward to our continued good cooperation". The president's prime challenger, Muharrem Ince, who had warned his supporters of possible fraud, had not conceded as of early Monday morning in Turkey.

She was referring to Erdogan´s victory speech in which he said the nearly 90 percent voter turnout "taught the entire world a democracy lesson".

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Erdogan, 64, the most popular but also the most divisive politician in modern Turkish history, later waved to cheering, flag-waving supporters from the top of a bus in Istanbul.

The shift will give Erdogan more power in his next term, abolishing the prime minister's post, and eliminating numerous checks and balances created to help parliament protect against the misuse of presidential powers.

Parliament has been weakened and the post of prime minister abolished, as measures approved in a controversial referendum past year take effect.

Erdogan's AKP fell short of winning a parliamentary majority but a better-than-expected performance by its nationalist ally should allow the party to control the 600-seat legislature.

Turkey has been under emergency rule, which restricts some personal freedoms and allows the government to bypass parliament with emergency decrees, for almost two years following an attempted military coup in July 2016.

Turkey has always been vying for full European Union membership.

The CHP said it had recorded violations in particular in the southeastern province of Sanliurfa. A state of emergency imposed after the coup remains in place.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been elected as the first executive president of Turkey under the new presidential system.

Buoyed by opinion polls, opponents of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan believed they had a realistic chance of unseating him-or at least reducing his dominance in Sunday's elections.

In a message to Erdogan, German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed the importance of "a stable and pluralistic Turkey in which democratic participation and the protection of the rule of law is strengthened", her office said.

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