By: TRT WORLD
Turkish people will vote in a presidential runoff that could see incumbent Recep Tayyip Erdogan overcome main opposition candidate Kemal Kilicdaroglu after no candidate was able to reach the 50 percent threshold in the first round held on May 14.
Sunday’s voting will begin at 8 AM local time [0500GMT] and end at 5 PM [1400GMT]. By late on Sunday there should be a clear indication of the winner.
More than 60 million people are registered to vote, including 4.9 million first-time voters. A total of 191,885 ballot boxes have been set up for voters in the country.
According to Türkiye’s Supreme Election Council, more than 1.89 million people — 1,895,430 — have already cast their votes at Türkiye’s foreign missions and customs gates as of 10AM local time [0700GMT] on Thursday.
Voting at diplomatic missions ended on Wednesday, while the polling will continue at customs gates until 5 PMM local time [1400GMT] on Sunday.
In the May 14 elections, a total of 1,839,470 Turkish citizens abroad went to the polls to vote in both presidential and parliamentary elections.
Those who are unable to cast their ballots within the dedicated time in their country of residence will be able to vote at the customs gates until 5 PM local time on Sunday.
‘Great Türkiye Victory’
On Saturday, Erdogan called on people to come out to vote, saying “let’s start the Türkiye Century with our votes.”
“Tomorrow, let’s go to the polls together for the Great Türkiye Victory. Let’s reflect the will that was manifested in the Parliament on May 14 to the Presidency much more strongly this time,” said Erdogan on Twitter.
Millions of voters went to the polls on May 14 to elect the country’s president and members of its 600-seat parliament.
Erdogan’s People’s Alliance won a majority in parliament, while the presidential race headed to the second round as no candidate obtained a simple majority or more than 50 percent of the votes.
Erdogan, 69, defied Western opinion polls and came out comfortably ahead with an almost five-point lead over Kemal Kilicdaroglu in the first round.
Erdogan led with 49.52 percent, with Kilicdaroglu, the head of the main opposition Republican People’s Party [CHP] and joint candidate for the six-party opposition Nation Alliance, securing 44.9 percent of vote.
Kilicdaroglu camp has struggled to regain momentum after the shock of trailing Erdogan in the first round.
Third-place presidential candidate Sinan Ogan said he endorsed Erdogan based on a principle of “non-stop struggle [against] terrorism”, referring to PKK terror group and its offshoots YPG, and FETO which was behind the failed coup attempt in 2016.
He achieved 5.17 percent of the vote in the first round.
SOURCE: TRTWORLD AND AGENCIES