Turkey's opposition concedes election defeat as Erdogan returns as president

A million people attend an election rally of Muharrem Ince

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan confirmed in a phone conversation on Monday their mutual interest in boosting partnership ties between the two countries, the Kremlin press service said.

In the parliamentary vote, with 88 per cent of ballot boxes counted, according to Anadolu, Erdogan's People's Alliance, which includes his Justice and Development Party, or AKP, and a small nationalist party, stood at 54.4 per cent, while the opposition Nation Alliance grouping together nationalists, secularists and a small Islamic-leaning party, was at 33.7 per cent.

The opposition raised doubts about the accuracy and reliability of the figures released by state-run Anadolu news agency, the sole distributor of the official vote tally.

Ince, of the secular Republican People's Party (CHP), conceded defeat in a news conference in Ankara, but railed against the vote, which he said was unfair and would have serious consequences for Turkey's democracy.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed victory in the country's presidential election on Sunday, citing unofficial election results.

But he said that there was no significant difference between official results and his party's figures, and therefore he would accept the outcome. "If Ince wins, the courts will be independent", said Ince, adding he would lift Turkey's state of emergency within 48 hours of being elected.

"Our people have given us the job of carrying out the presidential and executive posts", he said in a short speech from Istanbul. In a milestone, a pro-Kurdish group, HDP, gained the 10 percent of the vote needed for representation in Parliament.

While his supporters never thought a second round presidential vote would be anything but a foregone conclusion, they hoped Ince could capture enough of the vote to force one to happen - or even win the first round.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses his supporters gathered in front of AKP headquarters in Ankara, Turkey June 25, 2018.

A new constitution, narrowly approved in a 2017 referendum, grants the president additional powers.

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He is loved by millions of working class Turkish citizens for delivering years of stellar economic growth and overseeing the construction of roads, bridges, airports, hospitals and schools.

Turkey's High Electoral Board declared Erdogan, 64, the victor of Sunday's polls, which usher in a new executive presidential system that was approved in a referendum past year.

Meanwhile, the People's Alliance between the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) won the parliamentary election with 53.7 percent as the Nation Alliance - the CHP, the Good Party (IP) and the Felicity Party (SP) - managed to secure only 34 percent.

Erdogan counters that view, saying "Turkey is staging a democratic revolution".

Turkey has been under emergency rule - which restricts some freedoms and allows the government to bypass parliament with decrees - for almost two years since an attempted coup in 2016.

Ince said he had garnered 15 million votes and would work to increase them to 30 million. That, coupled with high inflation rates and fears that the central bank's independence will be further reduced, has left global investors uneasy after Erdogan's victory.

The state of emergency restricts some freedoms and allows the government to bypass Parliament with decrees.

The European Union and United States were keeping a close eye on the poll and trans-Atlantic security body the OSCE was due to deliver its verdict on the election later in the afternoon.

He further said that the historic and unparalleled bilateral relations between Pakistan and Turkey would continue to grow from strength to strength.

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