Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was declared the winner by the electoral commission.
A victory but not a triumph. Recep Tayyip Erdogan is reconfirmed as President of the Republic of Turkey, after already twenty years in power. The Sultan won for the third time the vote for the direct election of the head of state with 52%, substantially the same percentage as in the two previous electoral appointments but in the second round. "Our people have given us confidence again, it will be the century of Turkey", rejoices the head of state on top of a bus, but from tomorrow he will have to govern a country split in half. The broad opposition front led by Kemal Kilicdaroglu did not prevail stopping at 47.9% but forced Erdogan to win the runoff, as had never happened in past elections. And it has come close to a historic feat. "We will continue the struggle, our march continues", assures the 'Turkish Gandhi' who had invited voters to go to the polls to end "an authoritarian regime and for the arrival of freedom and democracy". His appeal was not enough and instead "the century of Turkey began", as Erdogan said celebrating the result he obtained at the polls, on the anniversary of the centenary of the foundation of the secular Republic of Turkey by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk which falls on October 29. Unlike his victory five years ago, the Turkish president will be forced to give answers tomorrow on problems that have worsened in recent years such as the difficult relationship with the West with Ankara, which has not yet given the green light to Sweden's entry into NATO. And it will have to face a very fragile economic situation, with inflation that is above 43% and at the end of 2022 had exceeded 80%, reaching the highest levels of the previous twenty years, while the Turkish lira has reached yet another negative record against the dollar in recent days. The issue of Syrian migrants hosting Turkey, nearly 4 million people who arrived after the civil conflict began in 2011, is set to be another hot topic for the future administration. Erdogan has promised that 1 million of them will return "voluntarily" to their homeland but Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, with whom he has been seeking reconciliation for months after breaking relations over a decade ago, has explicitly asked that Ankara's troops leave the country. Precondition for normalizing relations and preparing the ground for the return of refugees. Erdogan managed to win by maintaining his electoral base and also gaining the votes that Sinan Ogan, the right-wing nationalist politician who with just over 5% of the votes had ranked third and then decided to support the outgoing president in the runoff. Kilicdaroglu, at the head of a very heterogeneous opposition front, had used conciliatory tones during the first phase of the election campaign but it seems that he did not pay for the choice to turn to nationalist rhetoric in the last two weeks. This position made him less popular in Kurdish-majority regions that had supported him in the first round. While Erdogan is now already looking ahead to the 2024 local elections, where he aims to recapture Istanbul and Ankara that he lost in the vote five years earlier, he is cashing in on the support of Putin, Orban, Qatar, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. Tomorrow it is rumored that the Turkish president may go to pray to Hagia Sophia, which he converted into a mosque in 2020, on the occasion of the 570th anniversary of the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople. In Istanbul, meanwhile, his supporters celebrate him by shooting in the air and honking the horns of cars that occupy the streets of Turkey's largest city with long lines. This victory also brings with it a novelty. The president decided not to give his celebratory speech at the headquarters of his AKP party in Ankara, as he has traditionally done after the elections, but will speak from the presidential palace in the Turkish capital, built by himself in recent years.
"We will continue the struggle, our march continues, we are here." This was claimed during a press conference in Ankara by the 74-year-old leader of the opposition Kemal Kilicdaroglu, who was defeated in the presidential run-off where Recep Tayyip Erdogan won with 52% of the votes.
"Congratulations to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on his victory in the presidential elections." This was written on Telegram by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky using the Turkish language. "We look forward to developing our cooperation for the security and stability of Europe and further strengthening our strategic partnership for the benefit of our countries," the Ukrainian president added.
President French Emmanuel Macron "congratulates" Erdogan on his re-election and underlines the "challenges to be faced together".