Turkey opens polling stations today for an unprecedented second round of presidential voting between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and challenger Kemal Kiliçdaroglu.
Erdogan, a conservative Islamist in power since 2017, won 49.5% of the vote in the first round against 44.9% for center-left and secular Kiliçdaroglu, who disputed the official results.
According to Lusa, after the alliance around Erdoğan and led by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) secured a new absolute majority in parliament in the first round of elections last May 14, the strategy of the two rivals focused on trying to secure the 5.2% votes that in the first round went to Sinan Ogan, the third presidential candidate with a strong anti-immigration discourse.
For his part, Kiliçdaroglu, the leader of the Republican People's Party (CHP) since 2010 and who stood in the polls as the presidential candidate of a coalition of six Turkish opposition parties, has in the past two weeks made a right turn in an attempt to capture the ultra-nationalist vote, much to the chagrin of the more left-wing forces that support him.
In the meantime, although there are no projections, it should be difficult for Kiliçdaroglu to capture the 2.6 million votes he lacks to reach the presidency.