ANKARA — Türkiye’s incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared victory Sunday in his country’s runoff election, extending his rule into a third decade.
With nearly 99 per cent of ballot boxes opened, unofficial results from competing news agencies showed Erdogan with 52 per cent of the vote, compared with 48 per cent for his challenger, Kemal Kilicdaroglu.
In his first comments since the polls closed, Erdogan spoke to supporters on a campaign bus outside his home in Istanbul.
“I thank each member of our nation for entrusting me with the responsibility to govern this country once again for the upcoming five years,” he said, according to AP.
He ridiculed his challenger for his loss, saying “bye bye bye, Kemal,” as supporters booed.
“The only winner today is Türkiye,” Erdogan said.
In Istanbul, Erdogan supporters began celebrating even before the final results arrived, waving Turkish or ruling party flags, and honking car horns.