The elections held on Sunday 24 June 2018, the Turkish leader in power for the last 15 years, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has won 52.5 percent of the votes to become the country’s first executive president with significantly increased powers under constitutional amendments approved in a referendum last year.

Under this US style presidential system, he will be able to appoint vice presidents, ministers, high-level officials and senior judges, as well as dissolve parliament and impose a state of emergency.

Mr Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AK) achieved 42.5 % of the vote with 295 seats in the parliament while its ally Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) got another 48 seat just short of 360 seats of absolute majority in the 600 seat parliament.

The opposition candidate for the presidency, Mr Muharrem Ince of Republican People’s Party (CHP) received 30.8 % of the votes emerging as a strong opposition leader.

Mr Erdogan, 64 will stay as President for the next five years and can stand  for a second term of five years again.

There were up to half a million monitors at ballot boxes to ward off possible electoral fraud and the elections are deemed to have been free and fair. Mr Erdogan said there had been no serious voting violations.

Election turnout was around 87% with people from all parts of Turkey including the elderly getting out of their homes to vote. The polls were the most fiercely fought in Turkey for in many years.

Mr Erdogan gave his victory speech from his party’s headquarters in the capital Ankara last Sunday afternoon declaring: “The winner of this election is each and every individual among my 81 million citizens.”