Ankara: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has won Turkey’s presidential election, extending his rule to a third decade.
Erdoğan defeated opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu in Sunday’s runoff vote.
With 99.43% of the votes counted, preliminary official results announced by Turkey’s Supreme Election Council (YSK) on Sunday showed Erdoğanwinning with 52.14% of the votes. Kilicdaroglu received 47.86%.
According to reports, before the results were made official, Erdoğan appeared to take a victory lap outside his residence in Istanbul, singing in celebration on top of a campaign bus. Addressing a large crowd of jubilant supporters waving the Turkish flag, he thanked the nation.
Erdoğan said: “We completed the second round of the presidential election with the favour of our nation. I would like to express my gratitude to my nation for giving us a day of democracy.”
“The winners of both the May 14 elections and the May 28 elections are all our 85 million citizens,” he added, referring to the two election rounds.
Speaking at his party headquarters in the capital Ankara, Kilicdaroglu said he would continue to fight until there is “real democracy” in Turkey.
“This was the most unfair election period in our history… We did not bow down to the climate of fear. In this election, the will of the people to change an authoritarian government became clear despite all the pressures,” he said.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on his re-election.
“Congratulations @RTErdogan on re-election as the President of Türkiye! I am confident that our bilateral ties and cooperation on global issues will continue to grow in the coming times,” PM Modi tweeted.